Zambia Revenue Authority and Zimbabwe Revenue Authority have taken the first steps towards Customs interconnectivity

07 July 2022

The Customs administrations of Zimbabwe and Zambia met in Harare, Zimbabwe from June 28 to July 1 to work towards advancing the bilateral exchange of Customs data and interconnectivity between Zimbabwe and Zambia. The bilateral joint workshop was supported with WCO technical assistance under the Sida-WCO Trade Facilitation and Customs Modernisation (Sida-WCO TFCM Programme) with funding from the government of Sweden.

At the opening, Mr. Batsirai Chadzingwa, Commissioner of Customs and Excise, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority, recounted the past joint efforts made by both Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) and Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) to pursue the mutual objective of interconnecting their Customs systems for effective data exchange in accordance with WCO standards. He welcomed the support being delivered by the Sida-WCO TFCM Programme to enable Customs interconnectivity and data exchange between the two countries as very important for cross-border trade and the growth of economies in both countries, and reaffirmed the commitment of both ZIMRA and ZRA management.

The highly interactive workshop, facilitated by a WCO accredited expert from Nigeria Customs Service, was successful to initiate a bilateral Utility Block for Customs connectivity and data exchange. Among other important outcomes, both Zambia and Zimbabwe reaffirmed their datasets including the WCO compliant UCR, and mapped the datasets to the WCO Data Model (DM) using the WCO DM App, aiming at establishing a “My Information Package” as the basis of the data exchange. The two administrations further developed a data exchange agreement that would enable legal interoperability in line with the Globally Networked Customs legal toolbox. A Change Management Framework was also developed to guide the engagement and sensitization of internal and external stakeholders.

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