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EAC Ministers adopt 35% as the EAC CET 4th Band

East African Community Headquarters, Arusha, Tanzania, 6th May 2022: East African Community (EAC) Ministers / Cabinet Secretary in charge of Trade and Finance have adopted 35 percent as the 4th Band of the EAC Common External Tariff (CET).

The Ministers, during a retreat on the comprehensive review of the CET, held on 5th May 2022, in Mombasa, Kenya, decided that implementation of the reviewed EAC CET shall commence on 1st July, 2022.

The meeting further agreed that there should be flexibility in implementation of the revised CET, particularly on products currently affected by the current global economic realities.

The Chairperson of the EAC Council of Ministers, Hon. Betty Maina, who is also the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Trade, Industrialization and Enterprise Development, Kenya hailed the move, dubbing it beneficial to the promotion of industrialization and in safeguarding consumer welfare on products where the region is net importing.

“The reviewed CET will address the requests for stays of application, which distort the EAC CET,” she said.

The meeting further directed EAC Partner States to identify products which are affected by the current global trade disruptions for consideration during the Pre-Budget Consultations meeting scheduled for 9th to 13th May, 2022.

In his remarks, EAC Secretary General Hon. (Dr.) Peter Mathuki, termed this as a positive step towards the promotion of industrial sectors and realization of the benefits of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

“The move is set to spur intra-regional trade by encouraging local manufacturing, value addition and industrialization,” said Dr. Mathuki.

The Secretary General said the CET is one of the key instruments under the Customs Union pillar which justifies regional integration through uniform treatment of goods imported from third parties.

Among the tariff lines in this 4th band include: dairy and meat products, cereals, cotton and textiles, iron and steel, edible oils, and beverages and spirits.

In addition; furniture, leather products, fresh-cut flowers, fruits and nuts, sugar and confectionery, coffee, tea and spices, textiles and garments, head gears, ceramic products and paints, among others.

The meeting was informed that the maximum tariff band at 35% was the most appropriate rate, as in the long run, it has the most positive impact to regional growth. They noted that in its application, a welfare loss is expected, but would be cured from generated added employment opportunities from the switch of local production.

The meeting, held in a hybrid format was attended by attended by the respective Ministers and Principal / Permanent Secretaries from the Partner States.

The Republic of Burundi was represented by Hon. Marie Chantal Nijimbere, Minister of Trade, Transport, Industry & Tourism; the United Republic of Tanzania was represented by Hon. (Dr). Mwigulu Lameck Nchemba, Minister of Finance and Planning; the Republic of Uganda was represented by Hon. Francis Mwebesa; the Republic of Rwanda was represented by Hon. Beata Habyarimana.

In addition, the EAC Deputy Secretary General Eng. Stephen Mlote was in attendance, while the private sector was represented by the Executive Director of the East African Business Council (EABC) Mr. John Bosco Kalisa.

For more information, please contact:

Simon Peter Owaka
Senior Public Relations Officer
Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Department
EAC Secretariat
Arusha, Tanzania
Tel: +255 768 552087
Email: sowaka [at] eachq.org

About the East African Community Secretariat:

The East African Community (EAC) is a regional intergovernmental organisation of six Partner States, comprising Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda, with its headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.

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