SADC NTB Sensitisation Workshop

Concept Note: SADC Private sector involvement in identifying and resolving Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) and promoting regional trade and development

Wednesday 23 March 2022

10h00-12h00 CAT

Purpose of the meeting
The SADC Business Council (SADC BC), SADC Secretariat and GIZ are collaborating with the SADC Women in Business to convene a Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) Sensitisation Workshop targeting women led businesses on Wednesday 23 March 2022 from 10h00 to 12h00. This meeting will provide women owned businesses in the SADC region with an opportunity to identify the major NTBs hindering their operations, available mechanisms to report NTBs and how to follow up and ensure reported NTBs are resolved.
The outbreak of COVID-19 in 2020 has interrupted almost all global sectors including the supply chain systems that are heavily reliant on transport and logistics services, which allow movement of goods and services across the SADC region. Most governments in the region responded to COVID-19 by putting in place measures that include border restrictions and limitations on the movement of cargo across regional boundaries thereby affecting cross border trade. Although the measures are important, facilitating the movement of essential goods and services remains a priority for livelihoods, industry and economic sustainability for SADC and Africa at large.

The recent border delays and queues arising from border restrictions and limitations on the movement of cross border cargo because of COVID-19 disrupts supply chains and inhibits intra-regional trade. SADC identifies NTBs to trade as one of the main obstacles to intra-regional trade and hence regional integration.

What are NTBs?
Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) refer to any barrier to trade other than import and export duties that make trade difficult and costly. They also refer to restrictions that result from prohibitions, conditions, or specific market requirements that make importation or exportation of products difficult and/or costly. NTBs also include unjustified and/or improper application of Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs) for example Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT).
Mandate on removal of NTBs
The SADC region identifies NTBs to trade as one of the main obstacles to intra-regional trade and hence regional integration. The removal of NTBs is outlined as a priority in the SADC Regional Indicative Strategic Plan (RISDP), the SADC Industrialisation Strategy (SIR), the SADC Protocol on Trade, as well as the SADC Trade Facilitation Programme.
How to address NTBs
Identifying and resolving NTBs demands a great deal of coordination and cooperation among the various public and private sector stakeholders such as the ministries of trade, transport, health, agriculture and foreign affairs, customs authorities, customs brokers, traders, transport operators and freight forwarders. This is not an easy task, as different stakeholders are likely to have diverse and sometimes conflicting interests and individual perspectives to defend.

Solving NTBs is a diverse and challenging subject with potential benefits for both business and government at national, regional, and international levels. Therefore, a combined effort between public and private sectors, and co-operating partners is imperative to jointly identify NTBs and formulate appropriate responses. Consequently, the purpose of the collaboration between the SADC Business Council, SADC Secretariat and GIZ-CESARE programme is to hold NTBs workshops in SADC member states to identify and solve recurring NTBs in regional trade.

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SADC NTB Sensitisation Workshop
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