Successful Step Forward towards the Development of Pool of Trainers in East and Southern Africa through the Master Trainer Programme
Under the auspices of the WCO/JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) Joint Project and with the kind host of Uganda Revenue Authority, the Second Working Group Activity (sub-regional workshop) of the Master Trainers Programme (MTP) on Rules of Origin (RoO) was held in Kampala, Uganda from 28 March to 1 April 2022, gathering the same members from the ten (10) countries in East and Southern Africa who had participated in the first sub-regional working group activity held virtually in November 2021.
This working group activity is the second in a series of activities to be undertaken by these ten (10) Customs administrations in East and Southern Africa, namely Botswana, Burundi, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe to enhance their capacity related to RoO to implement the AfCFTA. The Master Trainer Programme known as the MTP is a joint endeavor under the WCO/JICA Joint Project to develop sustainable and self-contained training capacity within the Customs administrations by (1) developing a pool of well-experienced trainers and (2) regionally featured training materials and program to be used by these trainers.
In total, nineteen (19) nominated Customs officials got together again in Kampala, and one official participated virtually, to continue work towards the ultimate objective of the MTP. While the first working group activity (WG1) in November 2021 concentrated on (i) identification of regionally common issues and challenges in the area of RoO as well as the training needs and (ii) improvement of RoO competence, this second working group activity (WG2) provided the working group members with the opportunity to understand and apply the fundamentals of competency-based training and aimed at equipping them to play their role as a competency builder in the area of RoO. Using the WCO Train the Trainers material according to the competency approach, the focus was on critical areas such as the competency-based training cycle and principles, the adult learning cycle, the development of training material, self-awareness and self-development as a trainer, etc. In addition, experts from the WCO and Japan Customs shared their expertise technical aspects of RoO, especially in the “WCO Guidelines on Customs Infrastructure for Tariff Classification, Valuation and Origin”, in addition to Origin verification and determination through case studies to achieve the Programme objective.
Working group members were encouraged to pursue their efforts in performing as competency builder after the working group activity and deliver national training. They committed to apply their learning on the competency-based training and be actively involved in designing and delivering training according to best practices.
Throughout the entire working group activity, the working group members demonstrated their complete commitment to the MTP and diligently participated in a number of working sessions/group. Both the WCO and the JICA welcomed the positive “can do” attitude, the noteworthy sense of ownership by working group members and their efforts to ensure sustainable capacity development in the Customs administrations of East and Southern Africa.