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ERITREA

Since March 1993
Since February 2013

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Restrictions on online payments
Proclamation No. 32/1993, A Proclamation to Provide for the Regulation of the Monetary and Banking System in Eritrea

Proclamation No. 173/2013, A Proclamation Pertaining to the Opening of Foreign Currency Deposit Accounts, Domestic Commercial Transactions and/or Contracts, Currency Remittance and Exchange and the Declaration of Currency of Travelers Arriving into the Departing from Eritrea.
According to Art. 4 of the Proclamation No. 173 of 2013, and Arts. 33-36 of the Proclamation No. 32 of 1993, all payment in the country are required to be in local currency, therefore requiring foreign firms to use local currency and payment methods in local currency.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

Reported in 2022, last reported in 2023

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Restrictions on online payments
Restrictions on payments and transfers for international transactions
It is reported that Eritrea’s legislation rigorously regulates capital flows, including the payment for the importation of goods and currency exchange, which results in a significant challenge for organisations in Eritrea to transfer foreign currency into or out of the country and to settle essential overseas bills. The National Bank of Eritrea is responsible for approving and managing all fund transfers into and out of the country, and has the authority to disapprove a transfer. Furthermore, local funds are not freely convertible to any world currency. The exchange rate is determined by the government and does not fluctuate. In addition, it has been alleged that the government is in breach of Article VIII of the International Monetary Fund (IMP) with regard to restrictions on payments and transfers for international transactions.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Threshold for ‘De Minimis’ rule
Lack of de minimis threshold
Eritrea does not implement any de minimis threshold, which is the minimum value of goods below which customs do not charge duties.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Framework for consumer protection applicable to online commerce
Lack of consumer protection legislation
Eritrea does not have any legal provision regarding the consumer protection that is applicable to online commerce.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Ratification of the UN Convention of Electronic Communications
Lack of signature of the UN Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts
Eritrea has not signed the United Nations (UN) Convention on the Use of Electronic Communications in International Contracts.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Adoption of UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Commerce
Lack of adoption of UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Commerce
Eritrea has not adopted national legislation based on or influenced by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model Law on Electronic Commerce.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Adoption of UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Signature
Lack of adoption of UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Signatures
Eritrea has not adopted national legislation based on or influenced by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model Law on Electronic Signatures.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

Reported in 2022, last reported in 2023

Pillar Online sales and transactions  |  Sub-pillar Maximum foreign equity share for investment in e-commerce sector
Reported ban on foreign investment
Art. 5 of the Investment Proclamation No. 59/1994 states that all sectors are open to any investors, with the exception of domestic retail, domestic wholesale, import, and commission agency companies, which are excluded unless there is a bilateral agreement of reciprocity. Yet, it is reported that in practice, this law has been suspended and the ruling Peoples Front for Democracy and Justice (PFDJ) determines the sectors in which private investment is accepted and defines the terms under which it is permitted. As a result, investment is de facto prohibited in most sectors of the economy (with the exception of mining), including the e-retail sector. It has also been reported that the majority of large enterprises are either wholly or partially owned by the government or the PFDJ.
Coverage E-retail

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Domestic Data policies  |  Sub-pillar Framework for data protection
Lack of framework for data protection
Eritrea lacks a comprehensive legal framework for data protection.
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Intermediary liability  |  Sub-pillar Safe harbor for intermediaries for copyright infringement
Lack of intermediary liability framework in place for copyright infringements
A basic legal framework on intermediary liability for copyright infringement is absent in Eritrea's law and jurisprudence.
Coverage Internet intermediaries

ERITREA

N/A

Pillar Intermediary liability  |  Sub-pillar Safe harbor for intermediaries for any activity other than copyright infringement
Lack of intermediary liability framework in place beyond copyright infringements
A basic legal framework on intermediary liability beyond copyright infringement is absent in Eritrea's law and jurisprudence.
Coverage Internet intermediaries

ERITREA

Reported in 2021

Pillar Intermediary liability  |  Sub-pillar User identity requirement
Mandatory SIM card registration
It is reported that Eritrea imposes an identity requirement for SIM registration. Anyone wanting to purchase a SIM card has to provide their national ID card, or a passport in case of foreigners, to activate a new prepaid SIM card.
Coverage Telecommunications sector

ERITREA

Reported in 2019, last reported in 2023

Pillar Content access  |  Sub-pillar Blocking or filtering of commercial web content
Blocking of commercial web content
It is reported that the authorities regularly block access to social media platforms and shutter internet cafés.
Coverage Social media

ERITREA

Reported in 2024

Pillar Content access  |  Sub-pillar Presence of Internet shutdowns
Presence of Internet shutdowns
The indicator "6.2.4 - Government Internet shut down in practice" of the V-Dem Dataset, which measures whether the government has the technical capacity to actively make internet service cease, thus interrupting domestic access to the internet or whether the government has decided to do so, has a score of 1 in Eritrea. This corresponds to "The government shut down domestic access to the Internet numerous times this year."
Coverage Horizontal

ERITREA

Since August 1994

Pillar Quantitative trade restrictions for ICT goods, products and online services  |  Sub-pillar Other import restrictions, including non-transparent/discriminatory import procedures
Proclamation No. 59/1994, Investment Proclamation
According to Art. 5.2 of the Investment Proclamation No. 59/1994, foreign investment in domestic retail and wholesale trade, import, and commission agency is limited. The Government set a precondition of having a bilateral agreement of reciprocity with the country of the investor or if the Eritrean government waives this precondition. As a result, it is reported that the government strictly controls all imports and exports severely limiting foreign investment.
Coverage Horizontal