On January 27, 2016, USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub organized and hosted a meeting of Botswana Unified Revenue Service (BURS) senior managers and directors from other government agencies who are to be involved in implementation of the National Single Window (NSW) and members of the NSW Project Management Unit (PMU).
From November 10-12, 2015, USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub participated in a workshop organized by the Botswana Ministry of Trade and Industry with support from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
From October 27-29, 2015, USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub Customs Modernization and Single Window Advisor Alistair Gall and Evans Chinembiri from the USAID Regional Economic Growth Office for Southern Africa participated in the Second Global Customs and Trade Facilitation Summit held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The event attracted 1,000 participants from over 100 nations with the goal of promoting global trade.
On October 22, 2015, USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub presented a training session on project management to the National Single Window (NSW) Project Management Unit in Gaborone, Botswana. The first phase of training took place in late September 2015 to equip the PMU with the necessary skills, techniques, and methodologies for successful project management.
USAID's Southern Africa Trade Hub met with the Namibia Standards Institution (NSI) in Windhoek on October 7, 2015 to conduct needs assessment to help the country comply with its commitments under the WTO Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Agreement.
USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub sponsored delegates from Malawi and Namibia to the 4th International Single Window Conference hosted by the African Alliance for E-Commerce (AACE) in Brazzaville, Congo from October 5-7, 2015.
On September 9, 2015, the Trade Hub hosted a meeting by Cluster 1 of the SADC Trade, Industry, Finance and Investment (TIFI) Thematic Group at the Trade Hub offices in Gaborone. Cluster 1, which consists of Trade and Customs, is chaired by Evans Chinembiri, USAID/Southern Africa Project Officer.
During the week of August 31, 2015, the Trade Hub traveled to the city of Zomba, Malawi to meet with key personnel of the National Statistical Office (NSO) and ensure harmonization with the National Single Window initiative currently supported by the Trade Hub in Malawi.
The SA Trade Hub participated in the 6th SADC Investment Focus Group (IFG) organized with support from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
The Southern Africa Trade Hub, in partnership with the Swaziland Investor Roadmap Unit (IRMU) conducted an investor roadmap audit covering government departments and the private sector. The Investor Roadmap is a tool to help improve a country’s investment climate with regulatory, legislative, and procedural reforms; the Trade Hub last conducted a similar audit in 2013.
USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub assisted with the setting up of IT equipment and office furniture purchased for the Standards Authority (SWASA) WTO Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) National Enquiry Point (NEP) and trained staff on functions, procedures and operations of an enquiry point on June 11-12, 2015 in Swaziland. The objective of the technical assistance is to help Swaziland fulfill the requirements of the WTO TBT Agreement.
On June 11, 2015, USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub, in collaboration with the Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS), held an awareness seminar in Livingstone, Zambia on the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade National Enquiry Point (NEP), which was re-launched in Lusaka in April.
USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub met with the Lesotho Minister of Economic Affairs, Kimetso Mathaba, in the Prime Minister’s Office to update the Minister on implementation progress for the Investor Roadmap for Lesotho. The meeting was requested by the Principal Secretary for the Ministry of Economic Affairs during an Investor Roadmap audit conducted by the Trade Hub earlier in May in partnership with the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) and the Department of Policy and Strategic Planning (DPSP). The recent audit was part of a five-day Trade Hub program that included a one-day validation workshop and a workshop on Investment Reform Communications Best Practice.
In partnership with the Lesotho National Development Corporation and the Department of Policy and Strategic Planning, USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub conducted an investor roadmap audit in Lesotho after a similar exercise in Swaziland the previous week.
The SADC Secretariat, in cooperation with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the EU through the Regional Economic Integration Support (REIS) Programme, has been working for the last two years to develop a SADC Investment Policy Framework using the OECD Policy Framework for Investment.
USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub presented at the World Customs Organization’s IT Conference and Exhibition May 6-8 in Freeport, Bahamas on the topic “Efficient Transit Solutions for Reducing Costs of Trading.” The three-day conference and exhibition addressed the use of modern information and communications technology to help countries connect to global and regional value chains.
USAID’s Southern Africa Trade Hub conducted the first stage of its legal review of Namibia’s Single Window legal environment from May 18-21, 2015, in Windhoek. The legal review is designed to assess the country’s legislative readiness for National Single Window and will result in recommendations to harmonize Namibia’s legislation with international standards.
The 2014 workshop brought together 80 attendees from the private sector, academia and international organizations under the theme “Managing Supply Chain Risks: A Southern African Perspective.”