Community Levy: ECOWAS Parliament Worried Over Low Remittances By Member States

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Community levy by member states of the ECOWAS Parliament is meant to mobilize funds required for the accomplishment of the missions of the Parliament and other ECOWAS Institutions.
This is according to the Speaker of the Parliament, Sidie Tunis in Freetown, the capital city of Sierra Leon, during the ECOWAS Parliament’s Seminar with the theme, “Involvement of Members of the ECOWAS Parliament in Monitoring the application of the Protocol relating to the Community Levy.”
The Speaker expressed displeasure over the low remittance of Community Levy by the Member States, adding that the 0.5% levy, imposed on goods from the non-ECOWAS Member States, is intended to cater for around 80% of the Community’s budget revenue.

He also noted that the theme, which warranted the gathering of the MPs as they have noted, hinges on the implementation of the Protocol relating to the Community Levy.

“In this regard, I recall that the Community Levy is a mechanism set up by ECOWAS Heads of States and Government and has been operational since 2003.”

“Sadly, we are witnessing a low mobilization of the said resources which has been around 30% of forecasts over the past three years.

“Additionally, the import receipts on which the Community Levy is based have also dwindled due to the impact of the health crisis on the global economy.

“Faced with such difficulty and with the peril which threatens the implementation of community projects and programmes, as well as the execution of the activities of the Community institutions, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, on the occasion of our Second Extraordinary Session for the year 2020, held via video conference, in July 2020, requested the assistance of the Parliament in the implementation of the ECOWAS Protocol on the Community Levy.

“The seminar, therefore, forms part of the continuation of Parliament’s efforts to make a significant contribution to the resolution of this priority challenge.

“It, therefore, offers all of us the opportunity to make relevant and innovative proposals, and thus provide the full complement of the effectiveness of parliamentary action, he stated.

“We are therefore entreated during our discussions, to define an intervention framework for parliamentarians in the strategy of mobilizing the said resources and to find the means to achieve the effective application of the ECOWAS Protocol, because, the Community Levy is the very expression of the solidarity and responsibility of our respective Governments in the process of integration and in the achievement of the regional agenda.”

He said that ECOWAS’ ambition to build a prosperous and peaceful community space is irreversible; adding that the results obtained in the common market is very appreciable.

On the COVID-19 pandemic, he encouraged citizens to get vaccinated massively, concluding that, “we either win together or perish together.”




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