As competition among ports in Eastern and Southern Africa stiffens, the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) has decided to come up with a Master Plan for establishment of dry ports in strategic regions, to ease clearance and shipment of transit cargo to neighbouring countries.
This was revealed by TPA Director General, Engineer Deusdedit Kakoko at Ruvu-Vigwaza area in the Coast Region over the weekend, where he accompanied Minister for Works, Transport and Communications, Prof Makame Mbarawa to Kwala area to inspect an ongoing construction of a dry port.
In his details, Engineer Kakoko said for years now TPA has been operating its dry ports, including constructing new ones but without a Master Plan - a dynamic, short and long-term planning document that provides a conceptual layout to guide future growth and development. Read more. Source | Daily News
Rwandan and Tanzanian private sector bodies on Monday reiterated their commitment to collaborate in advocating for elimination of Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) between the two countries.
Restrictions that result from prohibitions, conditions, or specific market requirements that make importation or exportation of products difficult and or costly continue to trouble business people from both countries and, this was high on agenda of a one-day peer to peer meeting held in Kigali.
“Unlike politicians, business people don’t have term limits or constituencies. All that is important is a good doing business environment; and that is what we all desire. We must continuously collaborate, or regularly share views on how best we can collaborate to further make things better,” Stephen Ruzibiza, the PSF chief executive, said. Read more. Source | New Times
Insurance regulators from the East African Community meet in Arusha on Thursday in efforts to adopt common regulatory standards meant to protect policyholders and ensure stability of the sector.
The meeting, called by the East African Insurance Supervisory Association (EAISA), will explore emerging issues including common regulatory standards, according to an announcement.
East African countries are seeking to harmonise rules to supervise companies in areas such as corporate governance, capitalisation, investment, stress testing, supervision and winding up of insurance firms. Read more. Source | Business Daily
Kenyan and Tanzanian businesses are calling for the elimination of various non-tariff barriers that slow down trade between the two countries.
A consultative meeting held in Dar es Salaam last week between the Tanzania Private Sector Federation (TPSF) and the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) noted that Kenyan exporters of cement, edible oils, cigarettes and other products still encounter restrictions on entry into Tanzania while Tanzanian dairy traders are finding it difficult to export to Kenya.
“There is a need to facilitate administrative processes on the movement of goods, including clearance at border points,” the trade lobbies said in a joint communiqué after the meeting on Thursday. Read more. Source | The East African
Uganda's Cabinet has endorsed the draft Investment Code Bill 2017, which seeks to align Uganda's investment policy stance with its commitments to the East Africa Community (EAC) Common Market Protocol. The bill also seeks to reform several provisions that would improve the entry, facilitation and protection experience of foreign investors doing business in Uganda.
The bill was prepared with input from Southern and Eastern African Trade Information and Negotiation Institute Uganda (SEATINI-U) with support from Hub investment policy experts. The Bill is now with Uganda’s Parliament for consideration.
Bill reforms include:
- Defining a local investor to include natural persons and companies where the controlling interest is held by persons from an EAC Partner State. It proceeds to accord them the same incentives as Ugandan investors.
- Shifting the approach of the code from regulatory and control-based to promotion and facilitation.
- Repealing several discriminatory provisions between domestic and foreign investors and incorporating international best practice in several measures.
- Providing better protection for foreign investors in several issues, including obtaining credit from domestic sources, and better intellectual property rights for use of foreign technology.
As right-wing populism recedes, following the tragicomic reign of Trump in the West and the election of the pro-EU Emmanuel Macron in France, the developmental approach taken by the Tripartite (the Common Market for Eastern Africa – East African Community and the Southern Africa Development Community) might well be a best practice for the whole world in pursuing regional economic integration.
The approach bases regional economic integration on at least three simultaneously critical pillars – building of large regional markets to support critical levels of investment, cross-border economic infrastructure including rural infrastructure and industrialisation, with a focus on small to medium scale enterprises, for social economic transformation. Read more. Source | New Vision
Tanzania and Kenya have held successful talks that will see the lifting of restrictions on imports from either country.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation, Dr Augustine Mahiga, announced the decision in Nairobi yesterday following discussions between President John Magufuli and his Kenyan counterpart, Mr Uhuru Kenyatta.
As a result, Kenya will lift the ban on wheat flour and gas imports from Tanzania, which, in turn, will remove restrictions on milk and cigarettes from Kenya. Read more. Source | The Citizen
The Kenya National Trade Policy is a publication by the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives State Department for Trade. It seeks to unleash Kenya’s potential for targeting domestic, regional and global markets. The multilateral, regional integration and bilateral trade arrangements that currently define the space that Kenya’s international trade enjoys present an immense opportunity for pursuit of this policy objective.
The Trade Policy articulates provisions that promote efficiency in the growth of domestic trade through transformational measures that address the constraints impeding against the development of the wholesale, retail and informal sectors. Strengthening the current supply chain is a priority for sustainable development of these trade sectors.
Cross-border women traders have called on the government to support them and also improve the trading environment. The women traders operating between Rusizi-Bukavu and Rubavu-Goma border posts say corruption, sexual harassment and inadequate operating capital are affecting businesses.
Janet Mukamunana, a member of Icyerekezo Cyiza Cooperative that sells tomatoes and onions, said these challenges have affected business growth and their earnings. As a result, we cannot compete with traders from the DR Congo who deal in similar products, she said during a recent tour of the cooperative by the Rusizi District leaders.
According to their cooperatives, small-and-medium enterprise (SME) owners doing cross-border trade also face sexual harassment and lack facilities like early childhood development centres to support them while doing their businesses. Corruption and harassment are reportedly experienced while in the DRC. Read more. Source | New Times
Companies may be on the fence about whether to commit to sourcing apparel in Africa, but the U.S. seems certain enough about the continent’s potential to keep investing in the sector there—and namely in Kenya.
Last week, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) East Africa Trade and Investment Hub (the Hub) signed a grant with Kenya that will create 2,000 full-time jobs and provide more than 100,000 hours in skills development for young workers in the apparel industry.
While Africa ramps up as a region for more robust apparel sourcing, the biggest hindrance for those that haven’t taken their business there has been both a lack of sophisticated logistics and a lack of skills in the apparel sector. Read More. Source | Sourcing Journal