Official praises free trade zone negotiations

  • AfCFTA Secretary General Wamkele Mene
Luanda - The secretary general of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Wamkele Mene said Monday in Luanda that negotiations for the implementation of this area are in good pace.

AfCFTA official said so to the press at the end of a meeting with the minister of Industry and Commerce, Víctor Fernandes, on Monday.

He said that despite the progress in the negotiations, the countries are still struggling with politically sensitive issues.

Among them, he quoted the automobile and textile sectors and agriculture.

The African Continental Free Trade Area entered into force in January  this year.

Fifty-four of the 55 member countries of the African Union signed the agreement in March 2018, and 39 States ratified the deal.

In turn, Minister Victor Fernandes said that as for financial issue, the Free Trade Area has the support of the African Export and Import Bank, which has established a working capital for its support activities.

For these transactions, he pointed out, a pan-African payments platform was created, with the support of the aforementioned bank, which is being tested in six (6) African countries, whose names he did not mention.

This platform is intended to reduce the costs of transactions between countries, as each has its own currency.

  “These costs are estimated at five billion dollars. However, with this platform, commercial transactions will have a reduction in financial costs, that is, they will maximize profits and reduce costs to operators”, he stressed.

On the other hand, he stated that Angola will adapt to the new reality, in view of the dynamics that an area imposes, with the advantage of reaching markets that the country cannot reach today, due to the existing barriers.

By joining the continental market for commercial transactions, the country will have access to a market that will increase from 30 million to 1.3 billion people.

Angola actively participates in the negotiations for the operation of the agreement and should, in the next few days, submit the Tariff Offer Proposal for the AfCFTA  to the African Union Commission.

The agreement that creates the African Continental Free Trade Area was signed on March 21, 2018, in Kigali (Rwanda) during the 10th Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union.

Angola signed the agreement along with the most African states, members of the African Union.

AfCFTA official said so to the press at the end of a meeting with the minister of Industry and Commerce, Víctor Fernandes, on Monday.

He said that despite the progress in the negotiations, the countries are still struggling with politically sensitive issues.

Among them, he quoted the automobile and textile sectors and agriculture.

The African Continental Free Trade Area entered into force in January  this year.

Fifty-four of the 55 member countries of the African Union signed the agreement in March 2018, and 39 States ratified the deal.

In turn, Minister Victor Fernandes said that as for financial issue, the Free Trade Area has the support of the African Export and Import Bank, which has established a working capital for its support activities.

For these transactions, he pointed out, a pan-African payments platform was created, with the support of the aforementioned bank, which is being tested in six (6) African countries, whose names he did not mention.

This platform is intended to reduce the costs of transactions between countries, as each has its own currency.

  “These costs are estimated at five billion dollars. However, with this platform, commercial transactions will have a reduction in financial costs, that is, they will maximize profits and reduce costs to operators”, he stressed.

On the other hand, he stated that Angola will adapt to the new reality, in view of the dynamics that an area imposes, with the advantage of reaching markets that the country cannot reach today, due to the existing barriers.

By joining the continental market for commercial transactions, the country will have access to a market that will increase from 30 million to 1.3 billion people.

Angola actively participates in the negotiations for the operation of the agreement and should, in the next few days, submit the Tariff Offer Proposal for the AfCFTA  to the African Union Commission.

The agreement that creates the African Continental Free Trade Area was signed on March 21, 2018, in Kigali (Rwanda) during the 10th Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union.

Angola signed the agreement along with the most African states, members of the African Union.