#National News

GRA Corporate head calls for elimination of technical barriers to trade

Mar 23, 2021, 1:27 PM | Article By: Abdoulie Nyockeh

Head of Corporate and Public Affairs at The Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA) has called on countries in the sub-region to eliminate all forms of technical barriers that impede free flow of businesses and services in the region.

Ousman Bah was speaking in an exclusive interview with The Point at his office in Banjul. The interview came hard on the heels of a recent visit to The Gambia by a delegation from Mali.

He equally urged authorities in Senegal to be conscious of the ECOWAS protocols and be fair to Gambians, rather than instituting trade barriers meant to frustrate Malians from trading with The Gambia.

Bah indicated that the behavior of some Senegalese securities at the border by imposing certain non-tariff is ‘uncalled for’ as it is not aligned with the ECOWAS protocols.

The move, he alleged, is just to frustrate and discourage businesses between the two brotherly countries. 

“As far as the ECOWAS protocols are concerned, the Senegalese authority cannot determine whom should the Gambia do business with. We have right to do business with any country of our choice as a sovereign state.”

Bah, however, revealed that The Gambia will launch all avenues to resolve this unfortunate situation of transit trade barriers between the two countries to ensure good working business relationship.

“One of the objectives is to eliminate all unnecessary non-tariff barriers and allow the free movement of goods and services within the corridors of the sub region.”

 The Gambia, he said, will continue to persuade for free flow of the transit trade matters between The Gambia Mali through Senegal.  “There is no country that can successfully attain meaningful development goal without trade. Therefore, since all countries have signed the ECOWAS protocols, there is need to adhere to it without any disregard.”

The delegation he added, also had a meeting with the GPA management, describing the meeting between his management and the Malians as very ‘timely’.

He assured the Malian delegation that GPA is ready and willing to work with them to create designated area for Malian cargoes in The Gambia.

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