May 19, 2020

EAC states’ refusal to open borders is affecting trade

trade
East African Community
Manufacturing
professo
2 min
EAC states’ refusal to open borders is affecting trade

Countries within the East African Community (EAC) are reluctant to open their borders, which subsequently is hurting trade and local manufacturers.

According to Jim Kabeho , the Acting Chairman of the East African Business Council, partial harmonisation of trade rules of the included states is damaging expansion in regional trade.

The six EAC states include; Republic of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, and the Republic of Tanzania.

Some of the mentioned countries are continuing to implement non-tariff barriers at official borders, which can include refusal to recognise a certificate of origin.

Kenya and Tanzania have continued to disagree on certificates at the Namanga border.

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To prevent this, the Common Market Protocol was enforced in 1 July 2010, more than 10 years ago.

The protocol was introduced in order to allow the free movement of goods, people, labour, services, and capital within the EAC countries.

“There are many positions we (EAC) have agreed upon which are not being implemented. Individual countries do not want to give away their authority to the common market,” Mr Kabeho reported.

“We do not have a common market per se as far as I am seeing in trade. We still have official borders being non-tariff barriers.”

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Jun 14, 2021

5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly

Tapoly
Insurance
Leadership
Digital
Kate Birch
3 min
Heading up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy is winning awards and leading with diversity

Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.

Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills. 

What do you do, in a nutshell?

I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.

How would you describe your leadership style?

I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.

What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?

Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.

How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?

I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.

They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?

The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless. 

What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?

Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.

 

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