Thursday, 29 September 2016

East African Community Members Want To Remove All Non-Tariff Barriers To Trade

The East African Community wants to remove all non-tariff trade barriers in an effort to cut down on transportation time and reduce the cost of moving products and services between the six member countries — Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and South Sudan. Non-tariff barriers include road blocks along highways meant to check issues unrelated to paying taxes or custom duties. These include checking the weight of goods on trucks and trailers, identifying the type of goods being transported, and checking for identification of traders. They also include traffic police checking the condition of vehicles. On Jan. 14, 2016, the East African Community members agreed to refrain from introducing new non-tariff barriers, and also on start reducing existing road blocks and weighbridges, among others. All the countries have so far co-operated, but now they want all barriers removed. The 20 barriers between Mombasa and Kampala have been reduced to about nine. There are 14 barriers remaining between Mombasa and Kigali, Rwanda. From Dar-es-Salaam to Burundi there are more than 10 barriers.