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The EU-WCO Rules of Origin Africa Programme

Implementation and Application of Rules of Origin for Enhanced Intra-African Trade


In December 2021, the World Customs Organization (WCO) and the European Union (EU) successfully signed a partnership agreement for a comprehensive programme on the implementation and application of rules of origin (RoO) for enhanced Intra-African trade, commonly referred to as the EU-WCO Rules of Origin RoO Africa Programme. This 48 months initiative aims to support the African continent to improve its capacity to deal with rules of origin and ultimately to support the harmonized and well-coordinated implementation and application of the rules of origin under Annex 2 of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and other regional and international commitments.

The AfCFTA is a landmark achievement in fostering regional integration to unify the African continent and further its socio-economic development. Under the AfCFTA Agreement, it is the rules of origin – establishing the nationality of products produced in Africa – that will determine whether preferential trade liberalization can be a game changer for Africa’s industrialization.

The EU-WCO RoO Africa Programme was launched on 19-20 July 2022 in Accra, Ghana, complementing and building up on the EU-WCO HS Africa Programme success.

The Programme provides tailored-made demand driven technical assistance, with an emphasis on training, and includes diagnostic and needs assessments, forums and consultations, Guidelines, Manuals and Standard operating Procedures and implementation of flagship initiatives.

The EU-WCO Rules of Origin Africa Programme aims to facilitating and increasing intra-African trade, trade between Africa and Europe, and between Africa and the rest of the world. The Programme is a concrete step taken by the European Union and the World Customs Organization in consultation with key stakeholders to support African partners in the implementation of the AfCFTA.

The outcome of the Programme is that beneficiaries at continental (AfCFTA Secretariat and African Union Commission), regional (African Regional Economic Communities - RECs) and national level (African Customs Administrations, Government Administrations and Private Sector) implement and apply the rules of origin in compliance with Annex 2 of the AfCFTA and in line with international commitments and best practices.

For more details, please contact EU-WCORoOAfrica.Program@wcoomd.org.

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