Building capacity to help Africa trade better


South African policy needs to catch up with electric vehicles

23 Feb 2022 ~ David Christianson
South Africa has every reason to be proud of its automotive manufacturing industry. It is a tremendous asset to the country’s balance of trade. Two-thirds of the vehicles it makes are ex...read more

Gold tax scam in South Africa points to a huge illicit industry

10 Feb 2022 ~ David Christianson
Fraudulent activity in South Africa’s second-hand gold market has been happening for years. But the details contained in a 2021 judgement suggests that the scale of this trade may be tru...read more

“But how do they settle their trade disputes if they never litigate against each other?”

10 Feb 2022 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
This question was asked by someone (yes, it was a lawyer) participating in a recent tralac seminar. It was in response to a discussion in which we pointed out that sub-Saharan African Stat...read more

Mauritius concluded a trade agreement with India in 2021 – what is in the Agreement?

10 Feb 2022 ~ Paul Cormon (volunteer)
On 22nd February 2021, Mauritius signed a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement (CECPA) with India. The CECPA entered into force on 1 April 2021. This is the first t...read more

What if? Another footnote to the demise of the SADC Tribunal: Henred Fruehauf Zambia Limited v Zambia Revenue Authority

01 Feb 2022 ~ Dawid van Wyk
When the leaders of the SADC member states decided in 2012 to scupper the SADC Tribunal instead of standing up to the instigator, Zimbabwe, they might not have foreseen the institutional h...read more

Should the AfCFTA accept a Flexibility Modality to launch preferential Trade?

01 Feb 2022 ~ Gerhard Erasmus, Trudi Hartzenberg
The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is designed to function as one continental trade arrangement in the form of a Free Trade Area (FTA) for all the Member States of the Africa...read more

Making intra-African investment work for women: what should be considered in the AfCFTA Protocol on Investment

27 Jan 2022 ~ Lolita Laperle-Forget
The ongoing negotiations of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Investment Protocol provide a unique opportunity to make the intra-African investment work for women. The Proto...read more

The AfCFTA must cope with global and continental challenges alongside existing structures: How will it do so?

26 Jan 2022 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
The AfCFTA is not only a trade deal. It is also a flagship project of the AU and must advance political and developmental aims to “deepen the economic integration of the African continen...read more

Message in a bottle

24 Jan 2022 ~ David Christianson
The South African government has an ambiguous attitude towards the alcohol industry. During the Covid-19 pandemic, it has demonstrated a puritanical dislike for the sub-sector, banning sal...read more

What does the AfCFTA want to be and what could it become?

24 Jan 2022 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
Do the legal instruments of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) contain a philosophy or strategy about deeper continental integration? What might this be? Is the AfCFTA a cont...read more

REC Courts and the AfCFTA

24 Jan 2022 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) adds an important new chapter to Africa’s economic integration agenda. The design of the AfCFTA regime will, however, require that that t...read more

When will the AfCFTA be customs-ready?

24 Jan 2022 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
The negotiations to finalise the tariff schedules and rules of origin (RoO) of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) are taking place during the last two weeks of January 2022. ...read more

Moving Up the Value Chain – How Can Africa Keep Climbing the Ladder?

21 Dec 2021 ~ John Stuart
In the standard model of world trade, which is taught to first year students around the world, the patterns of world trade are fixed and unchangeable. Ricardo’s classic model of comparat...read more

The status of paperless trade in Kenya

16 Dec 2021 ~ Edna Oduwo
The digitalisation of trade – as we move to paperless trade – will have a profound effect on trade management. The conclusion of the first multilateral trade agreement, the Trade Facil...read more

HS 2022: A look at the key changes and what needs to be done to adapt by 1 January 2022

13 Dec 2021 ~ Rwatida Mafurutu
The International Convention on the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System or simply the Harmonized System (HS) is used globally to achieve various objectives. These objectives...read more

The AfCFTA Investment Protocol: preparations for the negotiations and expectations

09 Dec 2021 ~ Rwatida Mafurutu
The preparations for the negotiations of the Investment Protocol under the AfCFTA agreement (The Agreement) are already underway though still in the early stages. The AfCFTA envisages, eve...read more

Creating a Beverage Champion for Africa

30 Nov 2021 ~ David Christianson
Heineken’ €4 billion offer for Distell and Namibian Breweries Limited (NBL) is a big move into the African alcoholic beverages market. It is a complicated transaction which has yet to ...read more

Ambiguities about the WTO Farm Subsidies for Food Security Purposes

26 Nov 2021 ~ Kedibone Machiu, Mpho Leseka, Noncedo Vutula, Thembekile Mlangeni
The WTO negotiations on Public Stockholding (PSH) for food security purposes is one of the highly contested topics in the agriculture negotiations. PSH programmes are instruments that are ...read more

Can the ACFTA deliver urgent Outcomes?

24 Nov 2021 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
During a recent webinar on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), some of the participants asked specific questions about how the AfCFTA will deliver concrete outcomes in terms ...read more

Why does the AfCFTA provide for Trade Remedies?

23 Nov 2021 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
The AfCFTA legal instruments contain detailed provisions on trade remedies and safeguards. Article 2 of Annex 9 to the AfCFTA Protocol on Trade in Goods says the “State Parties may, with...read more

Trade Remedies in the African Trade Governance Context

23 Nov 2021 ~ Gerhard Erasmus
Trade remedies and safeguards are used by governments to deal with unfair trade practices and unforeseen consequences when trade in goods is liberalised. However, they must comply with spe...read more

Was Glasgow a Cop Out?

16 Nov 2021 ~ David Christianson
Even before the ink on the Glasgow Climate Pact had yet dried, commentators were scrambling to decide whether the 26th Conference of Parties (COP26) to the United Nations Framework Convent...read more

Prospects and Developments in the WTO talks on Export Restrictions

16 Nov 2021 ~ Kedibone Machiu, Mpho Leseka, Noncedo Vutula, Thembekile Mlangeni
The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the limitations in the WTO rules on export restrictions. Consequently, the food importing countries such as Japan, Singapore, Chinese ...read more

Supporting transition – the matter of incentives, supply and demand

15 Nov 2021 ~ Anthony Leiman
Europe and the USA got rich on the back of coal fired industries, and China is still doing so. Unsurprisingly, coal rich developing nations also see it as an asset, and need incentives to ...read more

Should farmers be worried about the “Methane Pledge”?

15 Nov 2021 ~ Anthony Leiman
Should farmers be worried about the COP “Methane Pledge” to reduce methane emissions by 30% before 2030?[1] There was real concern amongst them in the UK and Ireland, especially when n...read more

Making sense of the COP26 agenda

15 Nov 2021 ~ Anthony Leiman
In December 2015, 196 participating countries at that year’s conference of parties (COP 21) signed the Paris Accord whose aim was to restrict global warming to 1.5 degrees above pre-indu...read more

What are the costs of “the end of coal”?

15 Nov 2021 ~ Anthony Leiman
On 3 November, the UK released a report stating that 190 participants across the world had committed themselves to: end all investment in new coal power generation domestically and in...read more

COP 26’s collective action problem

01 Nov 2021 ~ David Christianson
Summit conferences can take decisive decisions. But there are occasions where their outcomes are little more than rhetoric and posturing. The 26th Conference of Parties (COP 26) to be held...read more

Climate finance matters for COP 26

01 Nov 2021 ~ David Christianson
At the Conference of Parties held in Copenhagen in 2009 (COP 15), 23 developed countries pledged to commit a total of US$100 billion per year to finance measures to deal with climate chang...read more

Is a positive outcome on trade-distorting subsidies possible at the Twelfth Ministerial Conference (MC12)?

01 Nov 2021 ~ Kedibone Machiu, Mpho Leseka, Noncedo Vutula, Thembekile Mlangeni
As the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is gearing up for the 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) in November/December 2021, an outcome in the agriculture negotiations is high on the agenda. ...read more


Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel +27 21 880 2010