New tariffs as EPA kicks in
Finance minister Calle Schlettwein yesterday said a new tariff book will be gazetted next month as part of Namibia's Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union.
This comes after the EPA, an agreement where there would be less or zero tariffs on trade between the EU and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), has been provisionally effected.
Schlettwein said although Namibia has ratified the EPA, it has yet to be gazetted. Therefore, all parties will have to use the old tariffs and get refunds once the new tariff book has been gazetted.
Speaking at a press conference yesterday, EU ambassador to Namibia Anna Hybaskova said the EPA has been provisionally accepted by the EU parliament, as all 28 parliaments states still have to ratify it.
Hybaskova said whatever is being imported from the EU will have to be equally shared among the SADC countries.
EU head of cooperation in Namibia Markus Theobald said some of the benefits of the agreement are that the EU is liberalising 10% of their products, while Namibia is only liberalising 86% of its products.
He said it will help empower Namibia, and means that Namibia will have less revenue from the immediate charging of tariffs, although the economic benefits will offset these losses.
“This will be an economic boost for Namibia, in particular for the private sector,” he stated