TradeMark rebrands to deliver efficiency model to West AfricaThe organisation has successfully implemented the one-stop-border-post concept in the East African Community member states.
One of the world’s leading Aid-for-Trade organisations, has rebranded to TradeMark Africa (TMA) and simultaneously officially launched its West Africa operations.
Formerly, TradeMark East Africa, during the past decade, the agency has funneled both multilateral and bilateral donor funding into making cross-border trade more efficient and has been a key player in increasing intra-East Africa trade. This was highlighted by the successful implementation of the one-stop-border-post concept in the East African Community member states.
As part of the pivot to West Africa, TradeMark Africa will support the Secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), based in Accra, Ghana, to realise its vision of integrating the $3.4 trillion African market. TradeMark Africa will also work with regional economic communities (RECs) such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), to boost regional economic integration and accelerate trade.
Furthermore, the organisation will work with member states to ensure governments and businesses benefit practically from the opportunities presented by these shifts – in particular along the Lagos-Abidjan corridor. The successful implementation of the AfCFTA is predicted to boost incomes in Africa by $450 billion by 2030.
TradeMark Africa’s Board Chairman, Amb. Erastus Mwencha said, “As a leading Aid-for-Trade (AfT) Programme, a continental approach gives TMA an important opportunity to expand its impactful programming progressively, while supporting the aspirations of AfCFTA to unleash the immense impact that free trade in high value products, exists in Africa. Our key aim remains trade facilitation, just like we have always done in the last 12 years in the East and Horn of Africa region, where we were founded and have had great milestones in our programmes.”
Founded as TradeMark East Africa during 2010 in Kenya, TradeMark Africa’s has expanded from its previous core operational area of East Africa and the Horn, to also support countries in West and Southern Africa. TradeMark Africa now has a presence in 14 countries in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA): Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Sudan, Ethiopia, Somaliland, Djibouti, Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique, and Ghana.
TradeMark Africa has to date made cumulative investments of over $1.3 billion in East Africa and the Horn, to reduce the time and costs of trading across borders, and to improve export competitiveness of African businesses. These have among other results slashed the time for traders to cross borders – by 70% on average; and for businesses to receive certification – often from many days to a number of hours. Its programmes have contributed to a 16.5% reduction in the total time it takes to transport a container on the Northern Corridor from Kenya’s Mombasa Port to Bujumbura, Burundi.