Government right on cross border trade

By Paul Jimbo

If recent pronouncements by state officials regarding plans to improve cross border trade is anything to go by then South Sudan is on the right path to economic recovery.

From where I sit, reality has downed on all of us that we cannot continue relying on a single source of revenue.

Experience has taught us that over reliance on oil revenue is to blame for our current economic business.

What I mean here is that it is dangerous to over rely on a single source of revenue to finance an economy.

This explains the reason, we have all over suddenly woken up and begun soul searching, good enough we have gone for the best option in revamping an economy like ours; exploring non-oil revenue options.

It is possible that if we invest more in agricultural production and non-oil revenue options like taxes then we can definitely embark on a path to economic recovery.

The fact that the government has expressed its keenness on improving cross-border business to warrant a hassle free trading environment is enough evidence all is set for good times.

The main aim of cross border trade is to reach a best position regionally and globally by improving our country’s trading environments at borders.

Local investors and rural farmers should be empowered to unite to find solution for their challenges and grab available economic opportunities in order to participate in improving the country’s economic developments especially in supporting the country to reach the target of an industrial economy.

I must at this juncture thank the government for some improvements of commercial environments especially at borders’ areas, but the major challenge remained is the issue of passport.

During a prayers breakfast meeting in Nairobi sometimes this year, President Salva Kiir Mayardit requested line ministries and authorities concerned in both South Sudan and Kenya to speed up the process of harmonizing visa issuance to citizens of the two countries.

This would be a major step in boosting trade between Juba and Nairobi. It would further ensure waiver of some duties and taxes to increase free movement of goods and services.

The on-going implementation of the Revitalized Peace Agreement should be an opportunity for the country to unite and come up with a platform for discussing issues especially economical since disunity weakens them.

Traders should form associations to increase their collective bargaining powers when it comes to cross border trade.

The government should aim at improving the country’s commercial systems and environments that would support local traders and investors to enjoy and boost the country’s income through paying tax.

Introduction of tax waivers or import incentives to traders should aim at omitting other unnecessary levies that backpedal doing business in the country.


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