Uganda & China Launch Trade Agreement Through AEO Program

Uganda & China Launch Trade Agreement Through AEO Program

By Spy Uganda 

In May 2021, Uganda signed an Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) with China during the 5th AEO Global conference held in Dubai.

The arrangement was set to improve Uganda ‘s trade share in Africa borrowing from good trade practices of china as a major global player in trade.

Speaking at the MRA launch at Nakawa today, James Malinzi, the Assistant Commissioner Customs Audit explained that with the MRA, goods handled by both Uganda and China AEO companies will be given priority treatment.

“We have shared a list of these companies amongst ourselves. Over 5000 from China and 118 from Uganda. We shall continue updating as members grow,” he said.

Malinzi also revealed that in this financial year, about 214 Ugandan companies have transacted with China AEO companies with a value of over UGX 750 billion contributing more than 130 billion in taxes.

The revenue realized is one of the few reasons for this arrangement especially to government.

Patience T. Rubagumya, the Ag. Commissioner General revealed a number of other reasons to include; providing a platform for sharing information on traded cargo for faster and more efficient risk assessment and hence faster clearance of cargo; more effective controls leading to more secure and safer trade supply chain and increased competitiveness of Uganda products.

On the other hand, the traders will benefit from faster clearance of their goods, recognition as trade partners in both countries and opportunity to compete for bigger businesses.

Abel Kagumire, the Commissioner Customs, added that the implementation of the MRA is a milestone to URA because the AEOs in Uganda are contributing 26% of the revenue URA collects.

“AEOs in Uganda are compliant in all URA spheres including Domestic taxes and other government agencies,” he emphasized.

In order to ease trade operation, each AEO in Uganda has also been assigned a unique identifier just like AEOs in China.

Meanwhile, the AEO is a regional trade facilitation programme recommended by the World Customs Organization (WCO) to ease trade and customs clearance for tax-compliant importers and exporters.

Currently, Uganda has 118 AEOs, 58 of these are agents, 60 are importers and exporters, 18 do self-management of their bonds and 31 are regionally recognized AEOs. an accessible web community

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