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Services Export: A Study on the Exportation of Software Services

Clinic: Kenyatta University

Beneficiary: Western Cape Tourism, Trade, and Investment Promotion Agency (Wesgro)

Executive Summary

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This paper discusses the services export promotion, and particularly as it regards software export in fintech and telecommunication services.

The first chapter is the foundational premise of this paper and discusses whether software is a good or a service. This paper answers that, as most legal theory answers tend to be, it depends. Chapter One thus discusses the several factors which make a thing a good or a service and makes a conclusion on the possible treatment of software.

The second chapter discusses the implication of the distinction between goods and services in international trade and the different legal regimes that govern the international trade of goods vis-à-vis the international trade in services.

The third chapter undertakes a case study on services export promotion in India and Israel, being the two predominant players in the sphere. The chapter highlights the steps taken and incentives offered by the two countries to their service providers and whether specific incentives have been provided to service providers who make such provision by use of software. The chapter undertakes this study both from a legal perspective, looking into the provisions provided in law, and an economic perspective which focuses on the economic factors and decisions that promoted such growth in their services and software services export.

Flowing from discussions with the client, which intimated the desire to enter the Eastern Africa market, the fourth paper undertakes a discussion on the incentives offered in Eastern Africa to service providers. The aim of Chapter Four is bipartite: first, discussing the incentives gives WESGRO-based software services exporters an idea on what incentives they may make use of in Eastern Africa countries so as to grow their businesses, and secondly and perhaps most importantly, discussing the incentives gives WESGRO an idea of the benefits offered in Eastern Africa countries so that it may offer similar or competitive benefits to retain its service businesses.

The fifth chapter discusses market entry requirements into Eastern Africa countries, with specific focus on cross border trade as the mode of service delivery and particularly as regards cross border service provision of finance and telecommunications services.

The sixth chapter gives recommendations on proposed legislative reforms that WESGRO may consider so as to bolster the incentives that it provides to its service providers and grow its services sector and services export.

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