Regional business council lauds TMEA’s support

THE East African Business Council (EABC) Chief Executive Officer, Mr John-Bosco Kalisa has commended Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) for the EABC-TMEA Safe Trade Project initiative.

Mr Kalisa, who hosted TMEA’s incoming boss David Beer at his office on Friday, said the regional apex body of the private sector teamed up with TMEA in a bid to reduce barriers to trade amid Covid-19.

Key achievements from the EABC-TMEA Programme according to Mr Kalisa, include ratification of the AfCFTA Agreement by Burundi and Tanzania, ratification of the EAC Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Protocol, admission of the Democratic Republic of the Congo into the EAC and the reopening of the Katuna – Gatuna One Stop Border Post.

“The business council has planned to develop a holistic approach growth for developing private sector through borderless East Africa,” said MrKalisa.

Safe Trade interventions are centered on seven key clusters including the provision of Personal Protective Equipment(PPE) to critical and frontline operations at ports and borders; technology interventions to keep trade moving, trade policy interventions and  supply chain support for resilience, relief and recovery in essential goods and exports.

Others are advocacy interventions, gender inclusion and women in trade and safe trade zones.

MrKalisa further informed his counterpart that TMEA’s support, the EABC had successfully convened Public Private Dialogues with Ministers and conducted evidence-based research to inform policies making.

According to the EABC boss, one of the success stories was the adoption of 35 per cent as the maximum Common External Tariff (CET) by EAC partner states that will boost industrialization in the region.

The 35 per cent CET rate is set to increase EAC Governments revenue generation by 5.5 per cent and increase intra-EAC trade by $18.9 million.

EAC is the regional apex body of private sector associations and Corporates from the partner states.

It was established in 1997 to foster the interests of the private sector in the integration process of the East African Community.

It’s guided by a vision of a borderless East Africa for business and investment.

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