Support for regional institutions
The Bank’s Trade and Transport Facilitation Framework underpin its approach to mainstreaming trade facilitation in regional and country operations and strategy papers. It links the hard and soft aspects of trade-related infrastructure by striving to structure Bank Group interventions in trade facilitation as a necessary complement of regional infrastructure development efforts. The Bank’s approach blends both the composite narrow and broader approaches to trade facilitation. At a micro-level the Bank’s measures are associated with the reduction of on the border transactions costs, improving the efficiency of non-tariff measures, simplification and harmonization of border documentation, formalities and procedures to reduce the time taken in processing transactions.
Other measures broadly extend to addressing legal, regulatory and institutional constraints in the business environment and trade support institutions. Areas of specific interest include addressing non-tariff barriers and soft issues linked to the improvements of tangible regional infrastructure namely border installations, roads, ports of entry, energy infrastructure etc. For effectiveness and results the Bank collaborates and partners with regional member countries, regional institutions, development partners etc. The Bank is keen also to address legal and regulatory issues constraining the effectiveness of backbone services such as energy services, transport services, financial services, tourism services, and distribution services etc., both at the national and regional level.
The Bank collaborates with international institutions such as the World Trade Organization to foster progress on the Global multilateral talks on Trade Facilitation Agreement. Other partnerships such as with the World Customs Organization focus interventions to customs reforms and modernization, transport logistics etc. The Bank is part of the Joint Secretariat with African Union and the Economic Commission for Africa to mainstream trade facilitation agenda as part of boosting intra-African trade and realization of the Continental FTA.