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SACU considers tariff board

Mbabane: The Southern African Customs Union (SACU) Council of Ministers will consider a progress report on the establishment of the SACU Tribunal and Tariff Board. The SACU council of ministers’ meeting will be held in Swakopmund, Namibia on Friday, where ministers of finance, trade and industry from Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland would have intense deliberations. The Council is currently the highest decision making authority on all SACU matters.

A statement from the SACU Secretariat said another issue to be considered would be the draft amendments to the SACU Agreement, 2002, to institutionalise the SACU Summit. At the meeting, the council will receive a report on the status of implementation of the SACU trade facilitation initiative.

“Council guidance will be sought on the purpose of the regional industrial development policy vis-a-vis national development policies in SACU Member States. They will also consider a proposal to assist Member States identify cross-border collaboration projects. Council will receive a progress report on the ongoing trade negotiations with third parties. In this respect, Council will receive a draft report from the consultants of the impact study of the proposed Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, East African Countries, Southern African Development Community, (COMESA/EAC/SADC) Tripartite Free Trade Area on SACU and its Member States,” reads the statement.

Revenue issues continue to dominate SACU meetings and the one in Namibia would not be spared. The Council would receive a report of the task team on the review of the revenue sharing arrangement. The task team was given the responsibility to develop options on the new revenue sharing arrangement.

The statement says the council would also consider recommendations on the allocation of the Surplus/Deficit on the Common Revenue Pool for the year 2010/11. Recommendations on the allocation of revenue shares to member states for the year 2012/13 as well as an update on the development of an annex on the permanent arrangement for the management of the Common Revenue Pool would also be discussed.

1 December 2011
Nomthandazo Nkambule
The Swazi Observer
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