KIGALI - Rwanda Revenue Authority and customs authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that provides a cooperation framework between both institutions.
The agreement covers areas of trade facilitation through information exchange on smuggling or illicit trade, capacity building and research in areas that improve cross-border trade.
The Commissioner General of RRA, Ben Kagarama, signed on behalf of RRA while Deo Rugwiza, the Director General of Customs and Excise, signed for DRC.
Speaking to reporters shortly after the signing ceremony, Kagarama said that the MoU aims at facilitating trade and information exchange on smuggling or illicit trade that may happen across borders in both countries.
“We shall benefit a lot from this agreement since it addresses illicit trade activities which hinder normal trade across the borders of both countries, “he added.
RRA Commissioner General stressed that the cooperation agreement would also enhance capacity building and research into other areas that can facilitate trade between Rwanda and DRC.
“It would be fruitless for one country to try and manage fraud or smuggling across borders without the cooperation of the other,” he noted.
He stated that Rwanda and DRC would gain a lot from the agreement since it promotes normal trade between both countries other than smuggling.
On his part, Rugwiza said that the MoU would be instrumental in enhancing cooperation in information exchange to combat smuggling that is rampant.
“It also will help us enhance capacity in the areas of research, management and monitoring cargo transport systems,” he stressed.
He mentioned that they would put in place necessary measures to improve cooperation and partnership between the two countries by ensuring effective management of customs services in Goma and North Kivu borders.