WCO prepares forward capacity building support to Zambia on key Trade Facilitation topics

Following the Mercator Scoping mission for Zambia delivered in August 2018, the WCO completed a capacity assessment mission on the key WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) Articles Time Release Study (TRS), Coordinated Border Management (CBM), Data Harmonization and Single Window development, in Lusaka on the 17 to 21 of September. This mission is part of ongoing tailor-made assistance provided to Zambia through the HMRC-WCO-UNCTAD TFA Implementation Programme, financially supported by the Government of the United Kingdom through Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

This mission aimed at supporting the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) to assess the national readiness for conducting a TRS to assist ongoing efforts in trade facilitation with a focus on improving Zambia’s border control outcomes. In addition, an assessment of the current practices at the border was made, in particular Zambia’s use of ASYCUDA World to provide an increasing range of Single Window functions, including integrated modules for permit, licensing and valuation, to improve service delivery for ZRA and 16 partner border agencies. Meetings were organized with Customs officials, border agencies and private sector representatives to build support for the TRS and to discuss Zambia’s current and future approaches to CBM, data harmonization and single window development.

As a result of the mission, a comprehensive set of requirements and recommendations were proposed, aiming at supporting the ZRA in enhancing their internal capacity to achieve their ambitious development targets. Furthermore, a timeframe for conducting a TRS was defined and agreed, to be coordinated by the National Committee on Trade Facilitation. The WCO looks forward to continue collaborating with the Zambia Revenue Authority under the tailor made track of the Mercator Programme.