Tuesday, April 13, 2021
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Desiderio Consultants Ltd. is a think tank and a network of independent professional international development consultants established to promote and influence customs & trade-related policies in African nations to achieve trade facilitation reforms aimed at improving international and regional trade
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From UNCTAD a map of National Trade Facilitation Committees in the world:

On its new e-learning platform for National Trade Facilitation Committees (NTFCs), UNCTAD has developed a database with a map of all the NTFCs that have been established by the WTO member states in the different parts of the world, with full information about the structure, mandate and institutional framework governing the functioning of such committees.

Article 23.2 of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) makes mandatory for WTO members to establish a NTCF or to designate an existing mechanism to facilitate the domestic coordination and implementation of the TFA’s provisions. In Africa, many countries have created such Committees, in some cases also nations that are not yet WTO members (like Somalia, for instance).

In the ECOWAS region a yearly forum of NTFCs is being organised since 2000 as a mechanism of coordination of the trade facilitation implementation initiatives being pursued by each NTFC at national level. In the last edition (the 2nd) of the Forum, held from March 16th to 18th, 2021 in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, the participating Committees decided to establish a Regional Trade Facilitation Committee to enhance regional cooperation and promote experience sharing. A periodic African Forum of NTFCs was also launched in 2018 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to promote cooperation and coordination between NTFCs at continental level.

The UNCTAD platform also contains information on webinars, virtual training courses and reports useful for building the capacities of NTFCs' members, as well as other information on capacity development programmes of the United Nations Secretariat aimed at enhancing the capacities of developing countries in the priority areas of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. A video of presentation of the platform is available here.

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