The number of non-COMESA member States using trade and transport facilitation instruments developed by the regional body is set to rise following an expression of interest by the Republic of Angola to join the COMESA Yellow Card and the Regional Customs Transit Guarantee (RCTG Carnet) Schemes.

The Yellow Card is a third party insurance scheme that allows motorists to operate in all countries under the scheme and thereby eliminating the need to multiple insurance covers in every country of transit. Similarly, the RCTG is a customs transit regime designed to facilitate the movement of goods under one customs seal in the COMESA region.

The expression of interest was made during consultative meetings and workshop in Luanda, Angola on 19th May 2016 with stakeholders. Thy included representatives from the ministry in charge of trade and consumer protection, customs authorities, the police service, transporters and the insurance regulatory authorities and insurers association.

The objective of the forums was to engage the key stakeholders, raise awareness on the benefits of COMESA trade facilitation instruments to Angola in general and the Yellow Card- RCTG scheme in particular. Thereafter the process to enlist and implement the trade and transport facilitation instrument in the Lobito and other corridors would be initiated.

The entry of Angola will bring to three the number of non-COMESA Member States participating in the scheme in addition to Tanzania and South Sudan.

During the discussions with Angolan officials, the COMESA team was informed that the law governing compulsory third party motor insurance in the country recognized the Yellow Card Scheme and this would speed up the process of joining and implementing it.

It was agreed that experts from Angola would visit COMESA Secretariat, D R Congo and Zambia in July 2016 to share experience on the administration and operations of the schemes and make necessary preparation for its rollout.