Tunisia to begin implementation of COMESA Free Trade Area in January 2020
06/12/2019 16:09, TUNIS/Tunisia

(TAP) - Tunisia officially begins the implementation of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) free trade area in January 2020, reserving the right to apply the principle of reciprocity in treatment towards COMESA member countries, which have not eliminated customs tariffs at 100%.

According to a statement issued by the Trade Ministry on Friday, instructions were given to the competent authorities for the implementation of procedures relating to the COMESA free trade area, including the generalisation of the use of the COMESA certificate of origin.

Tunisia had paid its contribution to the COMESA budget on June 20, 2019, the date of deposit of the instrument of accession with the COMESA General Secretariat. Since then, it has participated in all meetings and events to which it has been invited and hosted a large delegation of experts and representatives of COMESA institutions, chaired by the Secretary General.

In addition, it organised a series of meetings to raise awareness of COMESA's structures, programmes and projects at the national level.

Tunisia's accession to the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa will enable it to benefit from a reduction of up to 17% in the customs tariffs applied on its exports.

In July 2018, Tunisia officially became the 20th member of COMESA at the Summit of Heads of State and Government of Member States held in Lusaka, the capital of Zambia.

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