Press release: Improved trade regime but good governance and
trade diversification remain major challenges
This second Trade Policy Review of the Republic of Guinea has given us
the opportunity to analyse the country's economic and trade
development over the past six years and to acquire a better
understanding of the serious challenges involved. The delegation of
Guinea, headed by H.E. Mrs Hadja Djènè Saran Camara, Minister of
Trade, Industry and the SMEs, was extremely helpful in this respect. I
would also like to thank Mr Farhane for his very positive
contribution, and all of the Member countries that contributed to the
success of this Review.
Given the difficult economic, social, and regional context that the
country has had to contend with, Members commended Guinea for its
effort to strengthen its legal and regulatory framework, and for its
poverty reduction policy. The new monetary and fiscal policies should
help to control inflation and restore the macroeconomic stability
needed to revive growth and to secure the support of the international
community. Members also took note of Guinea's exchange rate
liberalization. Certain speakers stressed that a new law on corruption
should contribute to improving governance which, we must remember,
remains a major challenge.
In the trade regulation area, Members appreciated the reforms leading
to the unification of customs levies and to the elimination of
preshipment inspection procedures, as well as the efforts to improve
transparency in government procurement. However, many of the applied
duties exceed the bound rates, and tariff exemptions are common in
certain sectors. Several participants enquired about the
implementation of the Customs Valuation Agreement, while others asked
how Guinea intended to combat the massive imports of pirated goods.
At the sectoral level, Members stressed Guinea's wealth in natural
resources and its economic potential, observing that several sectors,
such as agriculture, mining, tourism, and transport, could contribute
to the country's economic growth. They encouraged Guinea to take on
further commitments within the WTO, if only to make its legislative
framework more predictable, thereby attracting investment.
Members welcomed the replies given by the delegation of Guinea and
looked forward with interest to receiving further information. Many of
them pointed to the importance of providing Guinea with technical,
financial and material support.
In conclusion, this meeting has enabled Members to express their
support for Guinea in the face of difficult economic and social
circumstances. Our discussions have convinced us that Guinea is
sticking courageously to the path of reform, aware that an open and
transparent trade framework is the best way of boosting trade and
hence supporting sustainable economic growth. I fully associate myself
with Members in encouraging Guinea to pursue its macroeconomic and
trade reforms, and I urge Members to support Guinea in this effort by
guaranteeing both assistance and improved access to their markets for
its products and its service suppliers.