By Abdul Rahman Suagibu –
NEW AFRICA DAILY NEWS ( NADN ) Freetown, Sierra Leonne- Elderly administrators in toll of industrial exhibition, customs and trade matters, as agreeably as proxies of the private sector, civil society, the academia and the media of Gabon, have been assembled to a National Awareness and Sensitization Forum on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), from February 26th, 2020 on to February 27th, 2020, at the King’s Choice Appart Hotel in Libreville.
Financed by the European Union, the forum will be promoted by the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) through its African Trade Policy Center (ATPC) and its sub-regional Office for Central Africa, in tight affiliation with the Ministry of Tourism, Trade, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) and Industry of the Gabonese Republic.
The national symposium endeavors to expand understanding among stakeholders about the enactment of the AfCFTA agreement, approved on March 21, 2018, and confirmed on July 02, 2019, by Gabon. They will b provided with a contextual message on the Agreement, the anticipated outcomes of its execution and the strategic paths for seen by the Government in inducing the continental market operational.
In addition, the conference will give players the recourse to convey their probabilities and submit remarks heeding the process to be taken for the rehearsal of an AfCFTA national implementation protocol for Gabon.
Nearly, a hundred representatives from different sectors who will have a part in this meeting will retire from there; with a mutual conception of the Agreement ascertaining the AfCFTA and highlights for the strategy that Gabon will magnify to take the expectation of this new continental market.
The Agreement establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) has been functional since May 30, 2019, and trade under its net, would commence on July 1, 2020, after the dismantling of customs rites.
Through the AfCFTA, Africa is seeking, its economic integration agenda as provided for in Agenda 2063′s goal of an Africa without borders, by improving regional trade through industrialization, healthy economic growth, and greater sustainable development.
African countries have, through the Agreement, devoted to rescinding tariffs on 90% of the goods they produce. In this context, intra-African trade is likely to increase by 52.3% by 2020 and attract to Gabon, a large flow of investments and opportunities, especially in the areas there the country has comparative advantages.
The likely gains of the AfCFTA suggest a new criterion for African trade and development. It is noticeable that, the profits will not be spontaneous. The AfCFTA will generate predicted results only if Gabon, like the other member States, takes conscious litigation and deploy needful efforts through a national reform strategy. Such a strategy
must be productive and merged in order to maximize the increases of the AfCFTA, while minimizing adjustment costs for the country.
For New Africa Daily News Abdul Rahman Suagibu Reports, Africa Correspondent