The East Africa Trade and Investment Hub works to promote a more predictable, transparent and enabling business environment in East Africa, conducive to trade competitiveness and accelerated investment. Over the course of five years, activities under this component will achieve a 100 percent increase in the value of intra-regional trade in the EAC by advancing the implementation of the principles of regional integration, and enabling partner states to comply with intra-regional and international trade agreements and conformity to international standards.
The Hub team works closely with a network of private businesses, investment firms and trade associations, as well as other development partners, to gather, collate and assess evidence for trade policy and regulatory reform. It then initiates dialogue with policy makers and regulators.
Over the last two years, the Hub’s trade policy and regulatory reform activities helped achieve a 39% increase in intra-regional trade within the EAC. Hub activities supported the acceleration of the compliance by the EAC Partner States with the U.S.-EAC Cooperation Agreement, implementation of the EAC Common Market Protocol (CMP) and enabling policies for an improved business ecosystem.
Under the U.S.-EAC Cooperation Agreement, the Hub has supported both regional and national level WTO TBT and SPS compliance. With Hub's support, all EAC Partner States adopted the ePing electronic notification system (ENS); ENS meets the obligation for notification under the Cooperation Agreement on Trade Facilitation, SPS and TBT (an agreement that requires EAC Partner States to establish an effective process to ensure that they notify proposed measures on TBT and SPS to other WTO members). ePing will also allow the Partner States to access other WTO members' TBT and SPS measure notifications, and facilitate dialogue among the public and private sector in addressing potential trade problems at an early stage. Currently, both Uganda and Rwanda have adopted the ePing system, with Tanzania and Kenya agreeing in principle to use the system. Watch the video below:
Related Blogs and Resources
Published on April 12, 2017
Traders, especially women, are experiencing Customs delays and roadblocks that hinder export of goods across regional borders. This is despite it being almost seven years after the East African Community started implementing the Common Market Protocol.
A new study on non-tariff barriers facing Ugandan women trading in East Africa found that open borders as proposed in the Customs Union and Common Market protocols have not been realised.
Some of the challenges the traders face include problems with the Asycuda system, which rarely functions leading to wasted time. Asycuda is a computerised Customs management system that handles manifests and Customs declarations, accounting procedures, transit and suspense procedures. Read more. Source | East African
Published on March 29, 2017
The East African Community is developing a Regional Training Curriculum to support the operationalization of One Stop Border Posts (OSBPs) within the bloc. The training curriculum is a major capacity building tool for OSBPs in the region.
In a 20th - 24th March meeting, with the support of GIZ - African Union Border Program (AUBP), currently underway in Kigali, Rwanda, Partner States’ experts from the Revenue and Immigration Authorities are developing the tool, which aims at training the OSBP officers on the rules and ways to operate in their different positions at their different posts in cooperation and coordination with their different counterparts. Read more. Source | East African Community
Published on February 22, 2017
The newly operational One Stop Border Post (OSBP) facilities at the Rwanda-Ugandan border at Kagitumba, Nyagatare district has reduced clearance time by 25 percent, officials said.
An OSBP is a "one stop" form of border crossing point jointly managed by neighboring countries, with officials from host and neighboring country sitting under one roof on either side of the border.
This allows travelers to stop only once at the country of destination, where their travel or other documents are stamped both exit (from country of origin official) and entry (by country of destination official) at the same time, thus the "One Stop". Read more. Source | Coast Week
Published on January 11, 2017
The introduction of one-stop border posts has been hailed for improving trade among East African Community (EAC) member countries.
The border posts have also made EAC a major economic bloc in Africa, according East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) member and Kenya chapter secretary Judith Pareno.
Ms Pareno made the remarks during an EALA sensitisation forum in Isiolo on Tuesday.
She lauded the assembly for removing trade barriers at border points, saying the changes had resulted in faster and more efficient movement of people and goods. Read more. Source |Daily Nation
Published on January 05, 2017
The East African Community is working with agencies such as TradeMark East Africa to ease the movement of labour and capital and cross-border business.
The Community has initiated projects focused on creating market access, enhanced trade environment and competitiveness.
In 2016, 10 of the 13 one-stop border posts were completed and are operational under the integrated border management arrangement. These are the Holili-Taveta, Mirama Hills-Kagitumba, Kobero-Kabanga, Busia-Busia, and Mutukula-Mutukula posts. Read more. Source | East African
Published on December 21, 2016
In order to acquire land and start actual work on the development of Free Trade Zones in Uganda, the authority responsible for the establishment could require funding of up to Shs400 billion. Established in 2014, the Uganda Free Zones Authority (UFZA) was meant to attract export-oriented investments to Uganda that would be given specific tax incentives.
While launching the 2015/16 – 2019/20 Strategic Plan in Kampala on Tuesday, Mr Richard Jabo, the executive director UFZA, revealed that implementation will require funding of between Shs360 billion and Shs400 billion over the next five years. Read more. Source | Daily Monitor
Published on December 08, 2016
Traders in the East African Community (EAC) should understand the rule of game in the regional cross-border trade, a trade technocrat has advised as millers in Kenya complain about zero rated wheat flour imports from Tanzania.
The East African Business Council (EABC) Trade Economist, Mr Adrian Njau, said in a telephone interview from Arusha yesterday that most traders were uninformed of their rights stated on the EAC treaties.
“Business people operating in the region should not overlook the procedures needed to penetrate the regional markets, but make effective use of the duty-free access to sell their products,” he said. Kenyan millers have questioned the application of the EAC tax regime by the authorities which allow wheat from Tanzania to enter Kenya market tax free. Read more. Source | Daily News
Published on December 06, 2016
Kampala, Uganda was the next stop in the series of quarterly East African Community (EAC) Common Market Protocol implementation update sessions. These events are designed to appraise private and public sector on the progress the EAC Partner States are making towards full implementation of the EAC Common Market Protocol. The protocol creates a framework for economic integration among Partner States where there is free movement of goods, labor, services and capital.
The Hub works with legal experts in each of the Partner States to research country-level legislative developments and their impact on the integration process. The aim is to flag potentially retrogressive measures, such as discrimination against citizens of other Partner States from participating in the country's economy.
Below are some of the key highlights from the meeting. You can also download the presentation here.