The Tunisian-American Chamber of Commerce (Amcham Tunisia), Presented Thursday at a press conference held in Tunis the report which recommends « strengthening interagency cooperation at the national level, raising the profile on illicit trade, granting necessary financial and personnel resources and more aggressively enforcing anti-illicit trade regulations, mainly in the areas of Intellectual Property Rights violations and untaxed and unregulated parallel (grey) market imports. »
Tunisia Ranked 53rd out of 84 countries by the Global Illicit Trade Environment Index that measures the vulnerability of states Faced with this kind of trade. Tunisia must strive to strengthen its fight against corruption practices, notably on the level of customs, authorities and the judiciary to combat this scourge.
Tunisia’s “war on corruption” introduces valuable measures that can reduce illicit trade, but as long as corruption persists within customs, any attempt to strengthen border policing and control will have limited effect. Increased automation in customs procedures can be effective in mitigating “opportunities” for corruption, according to the Policy Recommendations to Combat Illicit Trade Inspire by the Global Illicit Trade Environment Index.
Tunisia also has to increase controls on money laundering which needs a holistic, comprehensive anti-money laundering regime including the ability to trace, freeze, seize and confiscate assets related to illicit financial flows.
The report also calls for rationalising tax policies and subsidies to guarantee that they do not encourage illicit trade, smuggling, adulteration and theft and ensuring the enforcement of intellectual property rights (IPR).
The report also called for the need for Tunisia to Improve public awareness and education on the threat of illicit trade and to consolidate its co-operation with neighbouring countries to combat the cross-border trade.