Frequently Asked Questions

Why is the following product not available, Pomegranates, Lavender, Rosemary and Pecan nuts?

Some products, generally those which are traded in smaller volumes, are not specifically allocated a separate standalone classification at global level but fall into a broader grouped category. So for example under the fruit heading, some strongly traded fruits have specific codes eg oranges, apples. Less traded products are then grouped as other. On Trademap it is possible to use the Advanced Search function to find the group category at the global 6 digit level into which such more specialised produce would fall. While the HS system is standard across all countries globally to 6 digit level, countries sometimes do individually further categorise specialised products if trade in a particular specialised product is traded more in their economies. It is possible to use the advanced search facility to identify the tariff line that a particular country might have classified at more than 6 digit level.

Is the software tailored for each company needs?

Yes the software is tailored, workshop is conducted to determine exactly what the company requirements are and adjust / build accordingly.

What are the costs for X-Border?

We can provide you with more information on X-Border and the cost breakdown. Our details are or +27 (012) 654 1419/8929

4. Good morning. Thank you for this session. It is helpful as we have just started exporting our Accessories to the UK. We are in Retail/Fashion Accessories. Will this Exporters tool identify retail shops/boutiques as well? We have an Exporters Certificate as well. Thanks, Phumzile - South Africa

The facility mostly covers producers, importers, distributors for business to business aims globally. Sometimes that includes larger retailers though not usually the smaller retailers. This guide provides enormously useful guidance with links to many sources of leads to connect assist in identifying buyers and retailers in the EU and UK. Under that there is an accessory specific guide

5. This export potential is it actually what the country is exporting to that particular country or the consumption of that particular product in that country?

The data relates to products traded between countries. The data does not cover in-market consumption.

Does Trade Forward SA and ITC organise Trade Shows for small businesses?

Trade Forward Southern Africa does not organise any trade shows..

Siyakhanda - software solutions. Is it a licensing software with user limits, etc.?

If time permit, can you demonstrate a specific rule for leather bags from Lesotho?

a. It appears from the data that the current trade in leather bags from Lesotho is not large enough to register in the global trade data in the tools so the next most relevant would be to track the trade opportunity in the category for your neighbouring exporters in South Africa which would be a good indicator of potential markets also for producers in Lesotho:

Thank you very much for informative session, does this platform offer African countries market information?

Yes, indeed it does.

One of the things that we are struggling with in Botswana is the actual shipping of the products which is very expensive is there any way or a plan we can leverage on to get our baskets in the EU?

Shipping costs from Africa often are a significant cost for our exporters. Unfortunately, that is likely to endure for some time until volumes of trade bring economies of scale in transport costs. Until then the best way to reduce those costs is by shopping around for best prices amongst logistics providers and negotiating rates with them.

How is the export potential calculated? For instance, if I change "Mozambique" to "Namibia", the countries with biggest potential change. Why?

One of the factors that determines export potential is the existing level of current exports from the supplier country globally as well as to the target market. Changing the supplier country thus will change those trade numbers and therefore also the market potential from one country will be different to the market potential of another supplier country. Also taken into consideration is the physical distance of a supplier country from target countries.

What is Trade Forward Southern Africa (TFSA)?

TFSA is a multi-year UK funded programme supporting growth in trade through the provision of targeted solutions that include technical assistance, capacity building, and improved access to essential market information that can alleviate poverty and promote inclusive economic growth, particularly for women, across the Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique.

What are the Priority Intervention Areas for Trade Forward Southern Africa?

TFSA has four priority intervention areas, namely: Women in Trade, Standards Compliance and Value Chains, Customs, and Trade Promotion and Information.

Is TFSA operational across all Southern Africa

Trade Forward Southern Africa (TFSA) is operational in the countries of the Southern African Customs Union – Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia and South Africa and Mozambique. These are also the countries with which the UK will enter into an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) from the 1st January 2021.

How do we keep informed or get more information about TFSA?

You can contact us through our email address: or follow us on our social media platforms (LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter) @tradeforwardsouthernafrica.

What is the budget for this programme and how long will it run?

The current budget for Trade Forward Southern Africa (TFSA) is £8.9 million and the programme is due to run until March 2023, though with provisions built in to sustain support beyond the life of the programme, such as the transfer of the Trade and Information Hub facility to a permanent host based in the region.

In what language will support be provided in Mozambique?

The Trade and Information Hub is offered in both English and Portuguese and all training sessions in Mozambique will be held in Portuguese. The Trade and Information Hub has a dedicated section to Women in Trade, which is also available in both English and Portuguese.