The New Times (Kigali)

26 July 2012

Rwanda: Elimination of Trade Barriers Gets Boost

Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA), Wednesday, gave Tanzania IT equipment worth 167 million Tanzania Shillings to help eliminate trade barriers.

The donation was handed to the Tanzania Chamber of Commerce Agriculture and Industry (TCCIA) to institutionalise the SMS-based NTB reporting mechanism.

Tanzania has always been criticised for being reluctant not only on elimination of trade barriers but also in integration process.

During a recent meeting of regional ministers in Nairobi, the Arusha delegation failed to agree on the resolution of eliminating barriers and requested more time to study.

Many importers and exporters, including Rwandans, use Dar Port in Tanzania which is one of the largest ports in the region.

NTBs are regarded as among the issues impeding the regional integration.

The provision of equipment is part of a four year program of support by TMEA to the tune of US$ 1 million to strengthen the private sectors' focal point on non-tariff barriers (NTBs) in Tanzania, according to a statement.

After handing over the equipment, Paulina Elago, TMEA Country Director said:

"TMEA will be supporting TCCIA over the next four years to strengthen the capacity of the chamber to play a leadership role in advocating removal of NTBs in Tanzania. TCCIA is a key partner in the promotion of intra-regional trade in the EAC."

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