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South Sudan to seek extension to comply with requirements of EAC customs union

September 27, 2019 South Sudan NEWS PORTAL

(NAIROBI) – South Sudan is likely to seek an extension to become compliant with the requirements of the East African Community (EAC) customs union, an official said on Friday.

Aggrey Tisa Sabuni, presidential advisor on economic affairs of South Sudan told reporters in Nairobi that the period of three-year that his country was granted to ready itself to assume its role and responsibilities is not sufficient.

“The likely course of action is that we will require an additional period of not less than one year to implement the EAC customs union protocol due to challenges of legal frameworks and capacity issues,” Sabuni said on the sidelines of the high-level conference on EAC trade integration.

The three-day event brought together policy makers and academia from the six partner states to review the level of trade in the economic bloc.

In 2016, South Sudan became a member of the six-country trading bloc but is yet to fully implement the customs union and common market protocol.

Sabuni noted that for his country to implement the customs union it will require to undertake reforms of its immigration, customs, taxation and labor laws.

The custom union requires member states to remove internal tariffs for goods produced within the region and maintain a common external tariff for goods imported into the economic bloc.

Sabuni noted that South Sudan is likely to experience loss of revenue of import duty that is currently charged on goods from the EAC partner states once it fully operationalizes the customs union.

“On the other hand, South Sudan consumers will benefit from lower cost of consumer goods from the region,” he said.

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