West African bloc to implement a single customs regime in 2015
ReutersDAKAR--Leaders of the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) agreed on Friday to implement a single customs tariff regime from 2015 in an effort to accelerate economic integration.
October 27, 2013, 12:01 am TWN
The Common External Tariff is designed to harmonize customs charged on imported goods to the bloc of some 300 million people.
“This is an objective ECOWAS has pursued since its creation 38 years ago and today we have crossed an important stage in the integration of our peoples,” the president of the Ecowas commission, Kadre Desire Ouedraogo, told Reuters.
The eight-nation Economic and Monetary Union of West Africa (UEMOA) — whose members form part of ECOWAS — already has a single-tariff scheme and a shared currency.
ECOWAS groups Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and the members of UEMOA — Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, Niger and Togo. ECOWAS aims to introduce a single currency throughout the bloc by 2020.