Currently, Microjustice4All (MJ4All), Microjustice Rwanda (MJR) and a Microjustice team in Uganda work together to implement the Microjustice EAC Cross-Border Trade Pilot Project titled “Microjustice for EAC Integration and the Free Movement of Persons and Goods across Borders in Rwanda and Uganda” which is funded by Trademark East Africa (TMEA) Rwanda and Uganda. Ultimately, this pilot project aims to increase cross-border trade by reducing trade-related costs and removing Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) through four components:
- Providing direct support to small traders at the Gatuna/Katuna border through legal consults on cross-border procedures and requirements for persons and goods, complaint-handling and directly resolving problematic cases at the border;
- Organising awareness-raising activities and legal trainings about the EAC and requirements for cross-border trade together with partner organizations;
- Gain bottom-up insights into Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) at the Gatuna/Katuna border through a complaint system for traders and daily interaction with the traders;
- Engaging in evidence-based advocacy together with the NTB Elimination Coalitions established in Rwanda and Uganda that strive for the reduction of NTBs that affect Rwanda and Uganda.
The cross-border trade project ensures that traders are aware of their rights and obligations and possess the required legal documents to cross the border with their goods.
The project is in its pilot phase and is intended to generate lessons learned and best practices with the view to expansion to other border crossings between Rwanda and Uganda, as well as expansion to border crossings between other EAC partner states, most notably where Microjustice Organizations are already present, such as Kenya.