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Burundi

The Hub's accomplishments in Burundi to Date:  

  • To date the Hub has supported 13 firms and associations from Burundi to increase their export competiveness
  • Supported the ratification of SPS Protocol

The Hub's assistance to Burundi

Burundi adopts draft law for East African Community Protocol on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures

On June 22, Burundi’s National Assembly adopted draft law on the ratification of the East African Community Protocol on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Measures (EAC SPS Protocol) pursuant to Section 8 of the Treaty Making and Ratification Act, 2012, essentially signaling the country’s approval of EAC SPS Protocol.  This action followed a high-level awareness-raising meeting that the Hub convened in March 2017, in partnership with the Burundi Bureau of Standards and Quality Control. The meeting specifically aimed at raising awareness on EAC SPS Protocol and the need to support and fast track its ratification in the country. 

The protocol harmonizes regional measures that align the EAC Partner States with each other and with global markets, ensuring easier trade. The measures seek to protect human and animal life from risks arising from additives, contaminants, toxins or disease causing organisms in their food. The measures, which also take into account plant life, seek to mitigate damage to a country from the entry, establishment or spread of pests, diseases or disease causing elements. The EAC SPS Protocol is expected to promote trade in food and agricultural commodities and strengthen the application of a harmonized approach for implementation of SPS measures and activities. 

With the Parliaments ratification, the next stage will be to forward the protocol’s instruments of operation to the Ministry responsible for EAC affairs, and then to the EAC Secretariat. Burundi now joins Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda as the EAC Partner States that have ratified the SPS Protocol. 

Improving Burundi’s use of electronic notification systems for trade policy awareness and action

The Hub is supporting Burundi to meet its transparency obligations to World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreements relating to SPS and technical barriers to trade (TBTs). In February 2017, the Hub trained Burundi officials on ePing, an electronic system that allows users to receive timely alerts and track and comment on measures being introduced by WTO members. It helps WTO members address potential trade problems at an early stage.

Strengthening trade and regional integration through advocacy and dialogue

Since August 2016, the Hub has reviewed 63 draft laws, regulations, and other administrative measures for compliance with the EAC Common Market Protocol. For non-compliant measures, the Hub has developed and disseminated reform memoranda to affected parties.

For example, the Hub conducted impact assessments on the following Burundi policies and recommended removal:

  • Article 16 (2) of the law on organization of privatization of public companies states that in privatization of enterprises, a percentage of their ownership can be reserved for Burundians or companies with major shares held by Burundians. (Restricting local purchase by non-residents of states’ shares in the privatization of coffee sector in Burundi)
  • The Hub recommended removing the clause that grants preferences to nationals. This will allow foreigners to bring in capital for increased coffee production, foreign exchange earnings and Burundian employment.
  • Ban on passengers transport to and from Rwanda
  • The impact assessment showed that the free movement of services, as per Burundi’s commitment under the EAC CMP, supports the cross-border transport sector in Burundi to develop and expand.
  • Ban on export of groceries and foodstuff from Burundi to Rwanda
  • This impact assessment showed how the measure has affected the price of different products in the market and how the measure led to the indebtedness of small producers who have contracted loans to finance their production.

Supporting regional grain trade

At the end of April 2017, the East African Standards Committee approved nine revised East

African Community (EAC) staple foods standards. Burundian stakeholders have taken an active role in the revision process. The Hub has been supporting the public review and drafting process for the harmonized standards through a grant to the Eastern Africa Grain Council (EAGC). The standards for dry maize, wheat grain, dry beans, milled rice, soybeans, maize flour, wheat flour, sorghum flour and millet flour will now move forward for possible EAC adoption. Currently, the inconsistent application of staple foods standards impedes cross-border transactions and diminishes the need for farmers to invest in quality production. The gazettement of these standards will enhance EAC regional cross-border trade.

The Government of Burundi and the Burundian private sector have also taken an active role in the Hub and EAGC supported business-to-business (B2B) regional grain trade forums. Five Burundians participated in both the Lusaka, Zambia and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia events. The B2B events linked grain sellers and buyers in support of regional grain trade and the movement of surplus grain to areas of deficit.

Assessing Burundi’s investment climate -- Investment Policy Diagnostic Validation Workshop, April 2017

The Hub supported a validation workshop on an assessment of Burundi's investment policy in regards to investment entry, protection and exit. The report informs the best use of technical assistance for an improved Burundian investment climate.

Facilitating investment in Burundi

The Hub is helping Burundi Tea, a tea processing company with 10,000 farmers, to access funding for expansion into new markets and to improve its out grower model and tea quality. Burundi Tea currently sells their tea to international markets through the Mombasa tea auction. The proposed $4.6 million mixed equity and deb deal is at an early stage. The Hub is directly supporting the fundraising process with impact investors as opposed to return-focused private equity funds because of the high-risk investment climate in Burundi. The Hub expects to sign a term sheet within the next several months.

The Hub is building the capacity of Burundi’s investment promotion agency to secure more potential investments through project profiling. For Burundi, the capacity building training has and increased focus on risk mitigation strategies for investors.

Related Blogs and Resources

EAC Public-Private Sector Workshop on WTO Transparency Requirements and Procedures on TBT and SPS - Presentations

Published on March 22, 2016
The Hub's Trade Policy team held a workshop on World Trade Organization (WTO) transparency requirements and procedures on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) and Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures on March 21 - 22. The workshop involved public and private sector actors from across the East African Community (EAC). Participants were educated on the WTO principles on good regulatory practice and best practices on how to implement electronic notification and enquiry points.  Below are links to the presentations made on the first and second days of the workshop as well as the draft country action plans: Day 1 Presentations - Individial files | Compressed zip file - Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 Day 2 Presentations - Individual files | Compressed zip file Draft Action Plans - Individual files | Compressed zip file
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EAC Public-Private Sector Workshop on WTO Transparency Requirements and Procedures on TBT and SPS - Day 1 Presentations

Published on March 22, 2016
Day 1 presentations at the Hub's EAC Public-Private Sector Workshop on WTO Transparency Requirements and Procedures on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) and Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures: Burundi Presentation on National Enquiry Point and Notification Autority - NKORERIMANA Georgette.ppt EAC Quality Infrastructure and WTO TBT Agreement - Willy Musinguzi.ppt EAC SPS ARCHITECTURE - an Overview of the Regional SPS Design - Timothy Wesonga.pptx Overview of Good Regulatory Practice - Kent Shigetomi.pptx Overview of the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade - Kent Shigetomi.pptx Overview of the WTO SPS Agreement and the role of National Notification Authority Enquiry Points - Tracy McCracken.ppt Presentation at Workshop for private sector organized by EAC Secretariat and EATIH - Philip Njoroge.pptx Progress on Implementation of Transparency Requirements of TBT Agreement in Uganda - George Opiyo.pptx Standards Alliance - The Code of Good Practice and ANSIs Role in the U.S. Standards System.ppt TBT National Enquiry Point for Kenya - Odongo Jared.ppt Tracking regulations and providing effective comments - Charles Azuka.pptx Transparency and Coordination in Rulemaking - Kent Shigetomi.pptx UL - Conformity Assessment Best Practices and Advancing GRP in EAC The Value of Public-Private Partnerships - Derek Greenauer.pptx UL - Stakeholder Organization Participation - Derek Greenauer.pptx
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Hub to hold workshop on WTO TBT and SPS transparency requirements

Published on March 17, 2016
From March 21-22, the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub, in partnership with the Standards Alliance and in collaboration with the East African Community (EAC) Secretariat, will convene a public-private sector workshop on World Trade Organization (WTO) transparency requirements and procedures on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) and Sanitary and Phyto-sanitary measures (SPS).
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East Africa #YouthInAg - opportunities and challenges

Published on March 17, 2016
"The  formal  sectors  of  employment, where most graduates seek employment, cannot absorb the large number of graduates, estimated to  be  between 10 to 12 million young persons per year, resulting in a large number of educated yet unemployed youth" - AfDB report. Agriculture and agribusiness present viable opportunities for youth to create jobs and wealth for themselves, yet the sector also presents challenges. The Hub sat down with a few of the participants at the Hub-supported Young Innovators in Agribusiness Competition to discuss.
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Burundi National AGOA Strategy

Published on February 23, 2016
Burundi National AGOA Strategy. Please note that Burundi is currently not eligible under AGOA. 
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Coffee earns Burundi 70pc export revenue

Published on February 03, 2016
AS BURUNDI’S private sector and businesses continue to reel under the impact of the current political crisis, coffee — which brings in 70 per cent of the country’s foreign exchange earnings — has remained vibrant in the international market despite a 41 per cent price decline. “Coffee production has increased in the past three years. Last year, production increased by 13,000 tonnes and fetched $3.81 per kilogramme,” said Marius Bucumi, the technical manager of ARFIC (Burundi Coffee Regulatory Authority). Read more. Source | East African
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Hub to facilitate public private dialogue in Rwanda

Published on January 13, 2016
On January 29, the Hub will host a public-private dialogue (PPD) on the implementation of the East African Community (EAC) Common Market Protocol. This is a continuation of the Hub's efforts to engage the public and private sector, in each of the EAC Member States, to jointly tackle issues related to the implementation of the Protocol. So far the Hub has carried our PPDs in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania.
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Comesa launches guide for regional maize trade

Published on December 22, 2015
Maize trade within Comesa states is set to improve after member countries agreed to harmonise standards and regulations on quality to ease importation and exportation. The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa Mutual Recognition Framework was launched in Kampala, Uganda on Thursday to streamline analytical results and recognition of certificates of analysis issued by the laboratories of the participating countries. This will eliminate the need for multiple testing by both the exporting and importing country. The deal involves six countries with significant maize trade which are Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Read more. Source: The Star
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