Struggling U.S. businesses may be curious to know that the Obama Administration wants to help reduce “the cost and time of exporting/importing goods” in order to improve “the overall trade environment.” Improvements, that is, in Ethiopia.
The implementation of what is known as the Trade and Customs Enhancement Reform Project, or TraCER, will be carried out via a five-year $19 million contract, which the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) intends to award to an as-to-be-determined vendor.
The specific goals of TraCER are to:
- Create a trade center that links academia, the private sector, and the public sector;
- Facilitate the streamlining of customs processes;
- Introduce information, communications, and technology platforms to support customs processes;
- Develop the capacity of a core team of Government of Ethiopia (GOE) staff to participate in trade negotiations;
- Educate the private sector on international standards and best practices;
- Elevate the profile of Ethiopian products in international markets; and
- Establish a framework for the promotion of trade corridors with neighboring countries.
Corollary objectives of TraCER include assisting the GOE in becoming a World Trade Organization member as well as enhancing “the quality of public-private dialogue” across Ethiopia, USAID said in a planning document dated Oct. 20.
Source Document: Solicitation #SOL-663-11-000008.