Zimbabwe submits AfCFTA tariff offer to AU Commission

The Chronicle

Harare office

ZIMBABWE has submitted the draft of its African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) tariff market access offer to the African Union Commission (AUC) for consideration.

Industry and Trade Minister Dr Sekai Nzenza made the revelation last week during her presentation on the Competition and Tariffs Commission’s National Trade Tariff Day.

“I urge the Competition and Tariffs Commission to go beyond the national tariff day and hold similar workshops with other sectors in 2022 to prepare our local industry for the implementation of the agreement ( AfCFTA), ”she said.

“If there are any significant comments and reviews from the AUC, as advised by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, my department will engage the commission to undertake further consultations and I am sure that the livestock sector will be part of the consultations, ”she said.

The minister added that Zimbabwe should reap all the benefits of AfCFTA, and simultaneously mitigate the negative effects that will likely emanate from this trade deal on local industry.

This would only be possible if the Zimbabwe industry understood and appreciated the terms of the AfCFTA.

“As the implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement is still in its early stages, it is crucial that the local industry is aware of the most important principles of the agreement, including its terms, product categorization , rules of origin, potential benefits, threats and migration. measures at its disposal ”, declared the Minister.

CTC Director Ms. Ellen Ruparanganda said harnessing the opportunities under AfCFTA could be one of the ways Zimbabwe could move forward towards meeting the goals of the National Development Strategy (NDS 1 ) and Vision 2030.

“As CCT, we feel very honored to discuss this agreement with you and how we can be of service to you in relation to our mandate.

“This year, as part of its National Tariff Day, the Commission decided to focus on the livestock value chain, following discussions with the Livestock and Meat Advisory Council (LMAC ) on the opportunities and challenges related to the implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement, ”she added. Ruparanganda said.

Free trade under the AfCFTA can benefit domestic industry by improving market access in member states, which normally results in costs for local exporters in the form of unfair trading practices (UTP).

“Traditional trade defense tools such as import bans, quotas and tariff increases are now less authorized and the survival of our national industry, under the pressures of liberalization, will have to rely more on legal instruments of trade defense, ”Minister Nzenza said.

The AfCFTA agreements also include provisions on trade remedies to counter the distortions resulting from UTPs, namely dumping, subsidies and increases in imports.

The ministry is currently in the midst of the implementation of Zimbabwe’s National Industrial Policy (ZNIDP) (2019-2033) derived from Vision 2030.

ZNIDP is guided by the principles of value addition and enrichment, export-oriented industrialization and promotion of sustainable industrial development.

The policy aims to improve the contribution of the manufacturing sector to GDP, job creation and foreign exchange generation

The Competition and Tariff Commission (CTC) is a statutory body established by the Competition Act. Its general function is to implement and enforce Zimbabwe’s competition policy and law, as well as to execute the country’s commercial tariffs program.

It promotes and maintains competition in all sectors of the Zimbabwean economy, helps local industry compete locally and in the export market, and promotes fair trade in Zimbabwe’s economy.

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