COMESA Legal TextsPosted on Tuesday, October 19th, 2010 by tralac in Legal Resources
The Agreement for the establishment of the Preferential Trade Area (PTA) for Eastern and Southern Africa was signed on 21 December 1981 and entered into force on 30 September 1982. However, the PTA always envisaged the creation of a Common Market and in line with this vision the Agreement was later replaced with the current Treaty establishing the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). The current agreement was signed on 5 November 1993 and ratified on 8 December 1994. In line with its objective of achieving deeper economic integration the COMESA Free Trade Area was established on 31 October 2000 when nine member states (Djibouti, Egypt, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Sudan, Zambia and Zimbabwe) eliminated tariffs on products originating from other member states. Rwanda and Burundi (2004) and the Comoros and Libya (2006) later joined the FTA, while the Seychelles accessed the FTA with a limited list of exemptions, increasing the number of states participating in the COMESA FTA to 14. The COMESA FTA will be transformed into a Customs Union over a period of three years ending 2012 and ultimately a Monetary Union by the year 2025. The current members of COMESA are: Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, D. R. Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. For more information go to the COMESA website.
The Treaty is the constitutive document establishing COMESA and the framework from which all subsequent instruments derive its legitimacy. All Annexes to the Treaty form an integral part of the Treaty.
- COMESA Treaty (PDF – 430kb)
- COMESA Procedures Manual on the Implementation of the Protocol on Rules of Origin (PDF – 628kb)
- Investment Agreement for the COMESA Common Investment Area
- Protocol on the Free Movement of Persons, Labour, Services, Right of Establishment and Residence (PDF – 476kb)
Regulations are binding on all the Member States in its entirety. Regulations are published in the Official Gazette of the Common Market and enter into force on the date of their publication or such later date as may by specified in the Regulations.
- COMESA Public Procurement Regulations (PDF – 157kb)
- Common Market Customs Management Regulations (PDF – 649kb)
- Council Regulations Governing the COMESA Customs Union (PDF – 70kb)
- Regulations on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (PDF – 187kb)
- COMESA Competition Regulations (PDF – 252kb)
- COMESA Regulations on Trade in Services (PDF – 1080kb)
While tralac endeavours to list current legal instruments, we cannot accept responsibility or liability for any inaccuracies or omissions. The negotiation, ratification, implementation and/or modification of these instruments is an ongoing process and not always well-reported or updated by the relevant authorities. See further tralac‘s terms and conditions.