Value of goods being exported from Tanzania to Rwanda has reached USD 270 Million.
The Chief Executive of the East African Business Council, John Bosco Kalisa explained here that cross-border trade between the two countries should be on the rise if data from the International Trade Center is anything to go by.
On the other hand Rwanda’s exports to Tanzania reached USD.5 million in 2019.
TOTAL BILATERAL TRADE HIT BETWEEN THE TWO COUNTRIES IS USD.274.6 MILLION
Karisa thus emplored the United Republic of Tanzania to fast-track the use of national identity card as a travel document in order to ease the movement of cross border traders across the East African Community region.
The official was speaking during a Public-Private Dialogue organized by the EABC and TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) and held at Rusumo Border.
Kalisa stated that Rusumo One-Stop Border Post connects Rwanda and Tanzania and is an important gateway to the Democratic Republic of Congo.
He explained prior to COVID-19 Rusumo OSBP used to clears 400 trucks daily.
Kalisa also urged Tanzania to adopt the EAC Single Tourist Visa to lure more tourists into the EAC bloc.
An official from Tanzania High Commission to Rwanda Happiness Ruangisa said that COVID-19 disrupted global supply chains hence the need to facilitate intra-EAC trade amid the pandemic for the resilience of our economies.
On his part the Charles Omusana, Principal Economist from the EAC Secretariat, said “improving trade facilitation is key to catalyzing the EAC Common Market and Customs Union.”
Tayebwa James, the Policy Specialist from the Ministry of Trade and Industry Rwanda said that Tanzania and Rwanda signed MoUs on the promotion of cross-border trade and elimination of NTBs.
He invited traders to take part in the upcoming joint border committee to discuss and formulate a concrete action plan on MoU.
Rusumo border is currently open for truck drivers and cargo-only and truck drivers have appealed to the Government of Rwanda to stop the mandatory COVD-19 rapid re-testing for drivers entering Rwanda via the border.
The public-private dialogue also recommended for the plant health inspectorate services to be offered at the border of Rusumo to facilitate trade and abolition of the USD.100 Single Entry Business Visa into Tanzania for service providers from the EAC Partner States and EAC Partner States to grant a 6-month visa to East African travelers in line with the Common Market Protocol.
The EABC-TMEA public-private dialogue at Rusumo OSBP attracted over 40 delegates composed of Officials from the Ministry of EAC Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Trade and Industrialization, trade facilitation agencies, importers, exporters, transporters and freight forwarders and women cross-border traders.