Mali - Country Commercial Guide
Trade Barriers
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Though the transition government temporarily restricted the export of certain cereals earlier this year in response to the ECOWAS sanctions, for much of the past 30 years Mali has generally had an open economic policy that welcomed international trade and investment.  The Government of Mali reduced or eliminated import tariffs on many goods in 1994, though it has since reinstated some taxes on a case-by-case basis.  The WAEMU external common tariff (TEC) has been in effect since January 2000.  ECOWAS instituted its own TEC in January 2015.  The Government of Mali eliminated export tariffs in 1990, with the exception of a three percent fee on cotton and gold exports.

In May, the National Transition Council (CNT), Mali’s transitional legislative body, approved a new customs code to replace the customs code of 2001.  The new code aims to simplify procedures and adopt a number of international best practices and protocols, including the Kyoto convention of 1999 on simplification and harmonization of customs procedures, the 2013 agreement for facilitating trade (Bali Package), and other WAEMU requirements.  In June, the transition government adopted a three-year national strategy for the development of exports to capitalize on numerous economic agreements, commercial preferences, and customs unions to reinforce Mali’s economic competitiveness and diversification.  The strategy aims to reduce trade deficit by focusing on sectors with high export potentials.

There are no legal or regulatory barriers to investment and trade by foreign companies, nor is there discriminatory treatment against non-national firms.  There are no restrictions on the repatriation of capital or profit.  Some non-tariff measures exist depending on the sector or product.  The U.S. Embassy advises U.S. companies to contact the National Directorate for Commerce and Competition (DNCC) for more information on import and export procedures for specific products.  The Ministry of Commerce and Industry created the Mali Trade Portal to provide information on the procedures, documents, and legal framework related to import and export of goods in Mali.