Trade facilitation looks at how procedures and controls governing the movement of goods across national borders can be improved to reduce associated cost burdens and maximise efficiency while safeguarding legitimate regulatory objectives. Business costs may be a direct function of collecting information and submitting declarations or an indirect consequence of border checks in the form of delays and associated time penalties, forgone business opportunities and reduced competitiveness.
By simplifying and modernising these procedures, African countries can increase their overall trade flows, resulting in higher state revenue, along with the other socio-economic benefits of increased trade such as job creation, poverty reduction, and improved quality of life.
AESDC supports the East African Community by offering research, training, and practical advice to both business and government clients. Often our work also extends to providing steadfast assistance in the implementation of trade facilitation solutions. Oure services in trade facilitation include but are not limited to:
Advice: Trade facilitation demands a broad skillset. Often, it is about understanding stakeholder requirements, defining the underlying problems, and evaluating the possibilities that trade facilitation type ideas can offer. Sometimes, it is about substantiating those possibilities with further research or lending assistance through mentoring and training.
Research: The implementation of trade facilitation is at once an economic, administrative, operational, legal, technological, and political challenge. Research plays an important role in making sure that project stakeholders are able to make informed decisions. AESDC is often relied upon to provide such studies – be it to support specific project objectives, develop business cases, or to help advance the field within an academic setting.
Training: Knowledge is a prerequisite to making informed decisions. Trade facilitation demands robust expertise in a wide range of topics, including the legal, the operational, the political, and the technological. AESDC also has a strong mentoring and knowledge transfer component.
Solutions: We have extensive experience in providing steadfast support in the implementation of trade facilitation solutions – including: single window implementation, One Stop Border Post, Integrated Border Management, Coordinated Border Management, information portal implementations, vision statements, online training solutions, and more. Much of the work is focused on specific aspects of trade facilitation, including initiatives to:
- Simplify and harmonise the applicable trade and customs procedures;
- Modernise existing trade compliance systems;
- Improve on administrative practices;
- Develop supporting institutional mechanisms;
- Measure performance and hold governing institutions accountable.
- Simple rules and procedures
- Avoidance of duplication
- Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs)
- Alignment of procedures and adherence to international conventions
- Trade consultation
- Transparent and operable rules and procedures
- Accommodation of business practices
- Operational flexibility
- Public-service standards and performance measures
- Mechanisms for corrections and appeals
- Fair and consistent enforcement
- Proportionality of legislation and control to risk
- Time-release measures
- Paperless trade
- Risk management and trader authorisations
- Standardisation of documents and electronic data requirements
- International electronic exchange of trade data
- Single Window System