Former President olusegun Obasanjo told Kigali media: “This is where our salvation lies: trade between us and, therefore, the development of our economies. The agreement will lead to a change in the perception of the continent by the rest of the world. Trudi Hartzenberg, the director general of the Trade Law Centre, a South Africa-based think tank, tells Africa Renewal that while the free trade area can significantly improve competitiveness and promote intra-African trade, it also requires “strong leadership and technical capabilities to assist member states in the upcoming negotiations. We are also witnessing strong flows of protectionism in the global economy. The agreement aims to make the regional bloc the largest free trade area in the world relative to the number of participating countries since the creation of the World Trade Organization in 1995. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNCA) has found that progress on mobility (African Regional Integration Index) has been slow. It is essential that African countries commit to further improving their institutional capacity in order to effectively tax and redistribute the profits of the CFTA. These include the integration and harmonization of regulatory measures, the removal of non-tariff barriers to trade and investment, and the facilitation of entry into the formal economy. (6) (8) The Pact aims to boost intra-African trade by making Africa a single market of 1,2 billion people and a cumulative GDP of more than $3,4 trillion. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) estimates that the implementation of the agreement could increase intra-African trade by 52% by 2022 (compared to the level of trade in 2010) and double the share of intra-African trade (currently about 13% of African exports) by the beginning of the next decade. (2) (8) In order to ensure effective implementation, the AU will establish an AfCFTA Secretariat consisting of an African Economic Council, a Trade Observatory and a Dispute Settlement Body. Paul Brenton is a Chief Economist of the World Bank`s Trade and Regional Integration Unit (ETIRI). It focuses on analytical and operational work on trade and regional integration. The widespread development of roads, ports, railways and special economic zones has made considerable progress. Thus, in recent years, massive investments have been directed in Djibouti in its transport and logistics networks, including three new ports, a railway line to Addis Ababa and the development of Africa`s largest free trade area.
While Djibouti is a small country of only 900,000 people, it is strategically located and borders one of the busiest trade routes in the world and one of the continent`s most dynamic economies, namely Ethiopia. You have reached the limit of premium items that you can see for free. The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has congratulated the Nigerian government for not signing the Framework Protocol, as the proposed agreement is vague with regard to market access and the application of rules of origin. . . .