The Citizen Entrepreneurial Development Agency (CEDA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Stanbic Bank Botswana to facilitate seamless importation of goods and services from China by CEDA-funded clients.
Stanbic Bank Botswana, a commercial bank that is a commercial bank in Botswana that is a member of the Standard Bank Group, has an all-encompassing solution for Africa-China cross-border trade that enables the matching of buyers from Africa with suppliers or manufacturers in China. The solution is facilitated through the Africa China Agent Proposition (ACAP), which provides buyers from Africa with exclusive access to accredited trade agents in China.
The partnership with Stanbic Bank Botswana will enable CEDA clients to source their inputs, raw materials and machinery from China with reduced risks and challenges.
Stanbic Bank Botswana will use the ACAP facility to provide solutions to challenges that CEDA-funded projects encounter when importing goodsand services from China. Such problems include language barriers, price negotiations, non- delivery of goods and supplies of sub-standard goods.
“Through this agreement, CEDA-funded projects will be able to connect with reputable suppliers to ensure seamless trade. In the past, we have had very unpleasant experiences where CEDA funded projects struggled with non-delivery or poor quality goods from suppliers in China,”said CEDA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Thabo Thamane.
The partnership comes at a time when the new CEDA guidelines compel the Agency to take security over assets financed for special sectors such as manufacturing, mining, construction, transport, energy, tourism, agriculture and tourism.
Thamane added that it is critical to ensure that assets purchased through CEDA funded projects are delivered in the right specifications, quality, and quantity to minimize the Agency’s exposure in case of default.
Stanbic Bank Botswana’s ACAP offering aims to assist CEDA clients to source and validate quality goods safely and efficiently from the most competitive suppliers in China. The facility will also empower clients with sight and control of the entire importing and logistics process. Operating through accredited trade agents from China will grant CEDA clients access to thousands of suppliers who will provide them with better quality goods and favourable terms.
Stanbic Bank Botswana Chief Executive, Samuel Minta, said clients will deal directly with the Bank regarding the status of their ordered goods. Moreover, he said, clients will get favourable trade terms which will enhance their cash flows and minimise the risk of non-delivery or substandard goods.
“The trade agent will facilitate travel to China if clients need to meet with suppliers. In cases where suppliers need upfront payment, the Agent will take full responsibility for ensuring that goods that meet specifications in terms of quality and quantity are delivered to CEDA clients,”said Minta.
Through the MoU, Stanbic Bank Botswana will also facilitate the procurement of goods from other markets such as South Africa and India by issuing a guarantee/a letter of credit for payments on behalf of CEDA clients.