First MTP working group activity to cooperate with East and Southern African Members on capacity building for Rules of Origin

17 十二月 2021

The WCO held the first Working Group activity (WG1) on Rules of Origin (RoO) under the Master Trainer Programme for East and Southern Africa virtually from 22  to 26 November 2021.  This activity is the first of the Master Trainer Programme on Rules of Origin launched to support East and Southern African Customs administrations in developing a “Regional Experts Pool” for more sustainable capacity building in the region and cooperate for smooth and effective implementation of African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) in entire Africa.

The Master Trainer Programme or MTP is a programme conducted under the WCO/JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) Joint Project to develop sustainable and self-contained training capacity by 1) developing a pool of well-experienced trainers and 2) regionally featured training materials and programme to be used by these trainers.  To achieve these objectives, a series of progressive activities will be undertaken by the participating Customs Administrations namely Botswana, Burundi, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe, supported by the WCO and the JICA.  Upon completion of this MTP, the Master Trainers are expected to deliver training on RoO not only in their respective administrations but also for the benefit of other Members in the region. 

In total, twenty (20) Customs officials nominated by ten (10) Customs administrations in East and Southern Africa, got together virtually. During the working group, each Customs administration shared the issues and challenges that they are facing in implementing RoOs, especially preferential ones.  Invited experts from the WCO, AfCFTA Secretariat and Japan Customs shared their knowledge and expertise on RoO from global, regional, and national perspectives, focusing on the AfCFTA and contributing to the improvement of the knowledge and expertise of working group members to become quality trainers. Moreover, Master Trainer and WCO Accredited Expert from Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) shared her experience as Master Trainer in East Africa. At the end of the Working Group Activity, working group members jointly developed their collective work plan to achieve two objectives of the MTP through the progressive follow-up activities.  Working group members expressed their strong appreciation to the WCO and the JICA for this new opportunity as well as to the participating experts for their dedication and sharing their valuable knowledge and expertise.

Both the WCO and the JICA welcomed the strong ownership and commitment clearly demonstrated by the working group members during the working group activity and reaffirmed their support to the continuous efforts of Customs administrations in East and Southern Africa to ensure sustainable capacity development.

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