Building capacity to help Africa trade better

Intra-SACU trade relationships and related issues

Trade Reports

Intra-SACU trade relationships and related issues

Intra-SACU trade relationships and related issues

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Much of the focus of South Africa’s trading relationship with BLNS countries is on the SACU revenue-sharing formula, a formula which is based entirely upon one side and one side only of this relationship. The SACU tariff revenue pool is divided on the basis of intra-SACU imports. These imports are dominated by BLNS imports from South Africa.

The objective of this paper is to analyse the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) trading relationship and briefly discuss the tariff revenue-sharing formula before going further and examining the implications of interrelated themes in terms of regional development. Analysis has generally focused much more on South Africa’s exports to Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland (BLNS) for two reasons: (a) this is the dominant trading relationship and (b) the SACU tariff revenue sharing is based upon intra-SACU imports only.

We have used South African trade data sourced from the International Trade Centre (ITC) expressed in US dollars in the first section of the paper but BLNS trade data sourced from the SACU Secretariat denominated in rand in the second section.

Readers are encouraged to quote and reproduce this material for educational, non-profit purposes, provided the source is acknowledged. All views and opinions expressed remain solely those of the authors and do not purport to reflect the views of tralac.


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