John Bosco Kalisa.
South Sudan’s integration with East Africa Community (EAC) region will reduce its costs of trade and stimulate economic growth through enhanced participation in regional and global value chains.
Similarly, TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) South Sudan continues supporting the government’s mandate to increase investments and reduce poverty through improving the business environment.
We believe that South Sudan can realise its economic growth by building its strategic partnerships, inspiring political good will from donors and encouraging free movement of goods and people within its country and with its neighbours.
In 2020, we continued supporting the government to strengthen institutional capabilities of Customs by aligning its procedures to those of neighbouring countries; and Standards body, by improving trading standards and sanitary and phytosanitary measures in preparation for future integration with the EAC.
Improving transport infrastructure and service delivery at Nimule Border continues to help seamless flow of humanitarian aid and improve existing and create new trade and work opportunities for border communities.
In the financial year (FY) 2019/20, we focused on completing works at Nimule One Stop Border Post (OSBP) and handed it over on February 6, 2020 to the Government of South Sudan, represented by the the Vice President, H.E Dr. James Wani Igga, and a delegation from Uganda, led by the Minister for Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Hon. Amelia Kyambadde.
Traders and humanitarian agencies now enjoy faster border processes, less congestion and reduced time and costs to clear goods at Nimule OSBP. Women who form most of the small-scale cross-border traders, have their exports such as shea butter, cleared faster.
Work continued to remove non-tariff barriers (NTBs) along the Nimule-Juba Corridor to quicken truck movement thus reducing transport costs and prices of consumer goods.
Officials were sensitised to detect, report, and jointly resolve any violations to procedures and NTBs along the road. TMEA closely engaged humanitarian partners such as the United Nations, to boost the flow of critical aid into the country.
There are a lot of positive expectations and positive strides for 2021.
The writer is the South Sudan Country Representative for TradeMark East Africa.