SADC trade protocol audit continues

Image source: Southern African Development Community.The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has instructed the Southern Africa Trade Hub (SATH) to conduct an audit of all signatories of the SADC Protocol on Trade

A spokesperson said that the audit will involve country visits to all of the SADC member states that are signatories.

The country visits are aimed to gather information for the audit report and, in particular, to gather views from a wide range of stakeholders concerning their experiences of how the SADC Protocol on Trade has been implemented.

So far, audit visits have been carried out in Lesotho, Mozambique, Mauritius, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Botswana, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

lt has been reported that during the course of the visits SATH meets with the ministries of trade and industry, customs and excise, competition commissions, chambers of commerce, SADC sanitary and phyto-sanitary and non-tariff barriers focal points, revenue authorities and national development agencies.

According to SATH, the outcome of this assessment will be an audit report which will be reviewed by the SADC Trade Negotiating Forum (TNF), senior officials and the Committee of Ministers of Trade (CMT) in Gaborone, Botswana.

For the 2012 audit – the sixth of its kind – the SADC Secretariat requested that SATH carried out a comprehensive audit, as this year marks the final year of tariff phase downs and final assessment by SATH.

Wallace Mawire

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