NAIROBI, Kenya — ONE Campaign welcomes the launch of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement in Niamey, Niger on 7th July 2019. By signing this agreement, African leaders are a step closer to realising the dream of the founding fathers of the Organization of the African Unity and we are moving towards the Africa we want. A united and prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable development.
When fully implemented, the trade deal will create a single market for goods and services by removing existing trade barriers across Africa. CFTA will establish a market of 1.2 billion people with a combined GDP of US$2.5 trillion in Africa. This could be an economic game-changer for the continent, mainly as its population is set to double by 2050.
Applauding the continental body, ONE African Union and East Africa Director, Dorine Nininahazwe said, “We congratulate the African Union and Africa’s leaders for taking decisive steps in launching the AfCFTA. However, as much as this is a cause for celebration, much work remains, as critical parts of the agreement have yet to be completed—including countries’ schedules of tariff concessions and services commitments, competition, and a possible protocol on e-commerce. This means the extent to which the AfCFTA will reduce barriers to intra-African trade is largely linked to the ongoing negotiations.”
“For the continent to truly reap a demographic dividend, we call on each AU Member State to use their greatest asset, the youth, and start to operationalize the agreement by meeting their implementation deadlines.”
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The ONE Campaign is a policy and advocacy organisation of more than 9 million people taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. Not politically partisan, it raises public awareness and presses political leaders to combat AIDS and other preventable diseases, increase investments in agriculture and nutrition, and demand greater transparency in poverty-fighting programs.