Wednesday, September 28, 2022
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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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Moyale One-Stop Border Post failure to integrate economies and communities living in proximity of the border

Despite the adoption, on 15 September 2021, of an operational procedure manual for joint border operations, the establishment of a Joint (bilateral) Border Post Committee to facilitate the coordination of operations between the border agencies of Kenya and Ethiopia and the launch of a community outreach program to promote trade of local communities at the border, the Moyale One Stop Border Post (OSBP) still suffers from unharmonised procedures and remains largely underutilised. According to a recent article published on Business Daily, rather than facilitating trade, the facility has turned with time into an impediment to the movement of people, preventing the two countries to reap the socio-economic benefits that the OSBP was supposed to deliver in terms of integration of their economies and of the communities living in proximity of the border post.


Horn of Africa Ministers sign joint declaration on trade facilitation

On 6 to 7 April 2022, the Horn of Africa Initiative (HoAI) Secretariat, together with the African Development Bank, the World Bank, the EU Commission, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and delegations of officials from the Ministries of Trade, Finance, Transport and of the revenue/customs authorities of Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Djibouti, met in Nairobi in a Trade Workshop to elaborate a consolidated matrix identifying priority actions that HoAI countries governments should pursue in the short and medium term in order to facilitate trade and increase regional integration in the Horn.


Togo and Benin Customs complete interoperability project for automation of transit procedures

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) launched in March 2019 a project for monitoring cargo moving in transit in the region by tracking it electronically from the customs office of departure to the office of destination. Initially nicknamed “ALISA” and subsequently renamed “SIGMAT” (Système Interconnectè de Gestion des Marchandises en Transit), such a system aims at interconnecting the ECOWAS member States through the integration into their customs IT management systems of a specific “SIGMAT module” allowing the electronic exchange of advance information on the movement of transit goods along some key trade corridors in the region. Its implementation is supported by partners such as UNCTAD, the European Union, the World Bank and the German Cooperation (GIZ). Other Regional Economic Communities in Africa have developed so far electronic cargo tracking systems for monitoring the movement of transit goods over their territory. This is the case for instance of the East African Community (EAC) Regional Electronic Cargo and Drivers Tracking System (RECDTS) and the Tripartite (EAC/COMESA/SADC) Corridor Trip Monitoring System (CTMS).


South Sudan looks at Djibouti as an alternative to the Mombasa port

South Sudan authorities have reported to have bought 12,000 square meters of land in the Doraleh port area in Djibouti for the construction of a logistics facility to handle import and export goods in an effort to find an alternative to the port of Mombasa. The land was initially procured by the South Sudanese Ministry of Petroleum for the purpose of exporting the country’s crude oil, but the country intends now to use it for storage of imported goods destined to its territory. However, the main challenges is the road connectivity, as there are no roads suitable to trade that currently connect the countries through Ethiopia.


New trade corridor inaugurated to promote livestock trade in Somaliland

Recently there has been great ferment within infrastructure development in Somalia. After the now close-to-completion construction project of the Berbera corridor - a route connecting the port of Berbera to the Ethiopia market - and the announcement of the imminent opening of a fifth deep-water port in Gara’ad, a project for the rehabilitation of 62 km of road and four bridges linking the seaport city of Berbera with Burao has been inaugurated today. The Burao-Berbera Road Rehabilitation Project aims at opening a new trade route in Somaliland for cattle trade, as Burao hosts one of the largest livestock markets in Somalia and in all the Horn of Africa, in an attempt to boost the economic growth of the entire region.


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