News & Information



15
March
2018

Member States of DRC and Uganda to work together to boost Cross Border Trade at Mpondwe-Kasindi border


By: TTCA
Summary/Brief
The Northern Corridor Secretariat is working with the Road Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Republic of Uganda to develop a framework of cooperation and joint Funding mobilization for development of Trade facilitation infrastructure projects to boost cross border and intra-regional trade between the two countries.


The Northern Corridor Secretariat is working with the Road Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Republic of Uganda with the aim of bringing together the two countries in order to establish a framework of cooperation and joint Funding mobilization for development of Trade facilitation infrastructure projects to boost cross border and intra-regional trade between the two countries. One of such projects is the development of the Mpondwe-Kasindi OSBP, the Bridge and the associated Road Infrastructures.

Mpondwe_Trucks_Crossing.jpg Trucks crossing the Mpondwe checkpoint   

The USD9.4 Million trade infrastructure project at Mpondwe border which include a bridge, a One Stop Border Post (OSBP) and a Modern Market is part of USD14million fund from the World Bank (WB) to implement the Great Lakes Trade Facilitation Project (GTLF) which is aimed at facilitating cross border trade between Uganda and DR Congo at the three borders of Mpondwe, Bunagana and Goli.

The said fund was secured as a loan from the WB through the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Government of Uganda, to facilitate intra-regional trade in general and to increase the capacity for commerce and reducing the costs faced by the cross border traders between DRC and Uganda in particular. The project will be coordinated jointly by the two countries and a joint implementation task force to include the Northern Corridor Authority will be considered to harmonize and fast track the project.

 Mpondwe_T.jpg

Ugandan traders crossing the Mpondwe checkpoint into DR Congo

Most of the trade between Uganda and DR Congo is done at the three major border points of Mpondwe in Kasese district, Bunagana in Kisoro district and Goli in Nebbi district, with Mpondwe being the busiest border point in terms of trade activities. Most of the trade is conducted by the cross border traders who cross to and from Uganda taking and bringing back merchandise. However, most of these cross border traders are facing challenges including poor market structures where they operate from at the borders, complicated border crossing procedures, mistreatment from unscrupulous individuals among others.

Uganda exports more to the Northern Corridor Member States with a sizable amount being attributed to informal trade. Informal cross-border exports products include animals and agricultural products, clothes, shoes, sandals, timber, alcohol/spirits, salt, motorcycle parts, textile materials, bicycle parts, cooking oil, cement, perfume, fertilizers etc.  

According to the “11th Report of the Northern Corridor Transport Observatory”, from January to July 2017, informal exports from uganda to the Northern Corridor region contribute about 27.85% of total exports.

Mpondwe_Map_BorderPost_DRC_Uganda.jpg

Map showing location of the border posts of Bunagana, Kasindi/Mpondwe and Mahagi/Goli

The Democratic Republic of Congo is one of Uganda’s export destinations ranking number three within the COMESA region. Uganda informal exports to DRC registered a total of US$ 148,060,415 from January to July 2017, which gives an average of about US$ 21,151,488 per month; while the total formal trade from Uganda to DRC amounted at USD124, 428,805, from January to July 2017.

The above mentioned “11th Report of the the Northern Corridor Transport Observatory” reveals also that DRC is a net importer. Exports comprise only 2% of the total trade volume. Imports, on the other hand, make up 98% (USD 334, 940, 614) of the total volume traded in 2017.

From January to July 2017, Imports to DRC comprised mostly food products as well as industrial products. Some of the imported products include Aluminium strips, Cigarette paper rolls, artificial filaments Cables, acetic acid, cloths, plastics, vegetables, diesel Generators, vegetable fats and oils, tobacco, Salt, among others.

The DRC exports to Uganda are estimated to the values standing at USD2.5million and these are mainly essential oils, cosmetics and some iron and steel. Most of the DRC exports are minerals which are destined outside the region. There are plans underway for joint Road infrastructure development connecting the two countries from uganda through mpondwe to Kisangani in DRC. With conclusion of the planned boarder post structures and road infrastructure projects the trade between the two countries is expected to tripple in the future.  





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