The unification process has taken a step forward with 44 countries signing AFCTA, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Considering that the EU started with 6 countries in the European Coal and Steel Community, this is a giant leap forward for Africa. Europe has internal trade worth 70% of their trade, and Asia 51%. Africa only trades 17% within the continent. Some call it a ‘shaky start’, but this is the beginning of a very long journey. As the 44 signatory countries begin to prosper from trade and build better rail and transport connections, the economic and political pressure for neighbouring countries to also sign on will become unstoppable. It will take a while, but I’m sure it is achievable.
Africa’s hope for a historic continental free trade area is off to a shaky start
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