Training Programme – Botswana Trade Commission: Cape Town, 23-27 May 2016
Trudi Hartzenberg and Gerhard Erasmus presented a training programme for the Botswana Trade Commission in Cape Town on 23-27 May 2016.
Government enacted the Botswana Trade Commission Act of 2013, in terms of which the Botswana Trade Commission is established. The Commission is responsible for international trade administration, including trade remedy and safeguard investigations, import and export regulation as well as tariff investigations. Botswana’s membership of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) has important implications for the mandate and the operations of the Commission.
The 2002 SACU Agreement requires that each member state establish a national body; the Trade Commission is Botswana’s national body. In terms of two SACU Council decisions, South Africa’s national body, the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) currently serves as the SACU Tariff Board, which has not been established.
The course covered Botswana’s multilateral trade obligations, as well as the preferential trade agreements to which it is party both as a member of SACU and independently, with respect to tariff management matters (amendments, rebates and drawbacks), anti-dumping actions and countervailing measures as well as safeguards. A discussion of the status of the SACU Agreement and the customs union’s impasse brought into sharp focus the implications for the Commission.