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Better EAC regional customs systems crucial for trade

Published on May 04, 2015

Better customs system means higher revenues and better controls, lower trading cost and fewer delays.

This is why reducing transit costs, simplifying customs procedures, and improving national and regional trade environments are of critical importance.

Rwanda Revenue Authority Commissioner for Customs Raphael Tugirumuremyi said this while opening a two days 8th Meeting of Management Committee of the Regional Customs Transit Guarantee (RCTG) Scheme.

The meeting was organized by the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Rwanda Revenue Authority in Kigali last week. 

The aim was to discuss ways of making the RCTG programme more successful for businesses.

“A landlocked country trade to a large proportion depends upon transportation and this is why high transport costs facing landlocked developing countries have become a far more restrictive barrier to trade for these countries than tariffs,” said Tugirumuremyi .

He said: “Those countries on average pay almost three times higher for transport services than these tariffs, which is why there is a clear correlation between distance and transport costs.”

According to World Bank 1% increase of distance from major markets could result in more than 1% decrease in the volume of external trade. 

“That’s why in view of this am pleased to learn that the RCTG scheme which was rolled out in the Northern Corridor countries in December 2011 has achieved the significant progress in the operations of the scheme particularly in the Northern and Central corridors’ countries,” Tugirumuremyi said.

More than 13,000 RCTG general bonds worth over $250million have been instituted and put to use in the movement and clearance of transit goods in the Northern orridor which is very significant. Read more. Source | Businessweek