During May 2019, we travelled to both Windhoek and Walvis Bay to conduct Brand Identification Training with officials of the Namibian Ministry of Finance, Department of Customs and Excise. Two separate sessions were conducted in Windhoek and Walvis Bay, the initial session a theoretical one focusing on identification of counterfeit goods and the processes to be followed and the subsequent session, a practical inspection and seizure of counterfeit goods from the market place.
In Windhoek, a number of businesses were inspected, and counterfeit goods identified, one of which was a known repeat-counterfeit-offender, alleged to be involved in numerous other criminal activities including rhino poaching and tax evasion.
In excess of 15000 units of counterfeit goods were seized during the two practical sessions in Windhoek and Walvis Bay, respectively.
KEY OPPORTUNITIES & CONCERNS
- Significant mineral deposits exist on land and are being explored offshore
- Transportation and construction sectors are growing in response to Namibia’s increasing role as a regional transportation hub
- Close trade ties with South Africa provide access to the region’s large market, while foreign trade links exist for mineral and fish exports
- The economic recession was three full years in 2019, and while economists forecast an emergence from recession in 2020, economic fundamentals are problematic
- The mining economy’s profitability is vulnerable to global commodity price fluctuations
- Poverty and youth unemployment remain high