Delegation of the European Union to Botswana and SADC

Moving past trade flow obstacles in Central Asia: Regional Expert Meeting

Bishkek, 28/06/2021 - 13:16, UNIQUE ID: 210628_28
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On the 23-24th of June 2021, participants from Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan attended a hybrid online and in-person regional expert meeting focusing on obstacles to trade for traders in Central Asia and possible ways forward.

The two-day event featured panel discussions with national experts from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan who explained their research findings and insights on obstacles to regional trade flows.

Over the past 12 months, the International Trade Centre (ITC), in close coordination with local partners, mapped and prioritized the main obstacles to trade faced by businesses on trade flows for products such as vegetable oils, flours, dairy, beans, dried fruit, juice, and fresh produce within Central Asia and to the European Union.

These efforts culminated in meetings with private sector and public sector representatives in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan to review and validate the findings.

The findings showed that there were several common obstacles to trade which varied in extent among the countries:

  • High cost and delays in obtaining certificates from accredited institutions
  • Non-recognition of CA certificates by partner countries
  • Long queues at physical border crossings
  • Lack of dedicated mechanisms for the expedited clearance of perishable products
  • Excessive documentation requirements to complete trade formalities
  • Opportunity to further refine the operations of Single Window systems

After the presented research, plenary discussions with representatives from the four countries were held. These discussions gave the representatives the opportunity to ask questions, share national best practices, discuss root causes, and generate ideas on how the R4TCA project could contribute to creating a more conducive trade environment in Central Asia and towards the EU.

Kyrgyzstan is one of the five beneficiary countries of the Ready4Trade project, funded by the EU for a total amount of 15 Million euros, and implemented by ITC. More information: intracen.org/ready4trade/

Stay connected: #Ready4Trade #CentralAsia

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