The European Business Council for Africa

Date: 19 July 2022 07:00-10:00


AfCTFA represents 1.3 billion people across 55 countries with a combined gross domestic product (GDP) valued at $3.4 trillion – A connected Africa. Across the world, countries are questioning trade agreements and economic integration. Africa needs long-term thinking and greater cooperation – and this is precisely what the AfCTFA represents. Across the world, countries are questioning trade agreements and economic integration, but while the world turns in one direction, the African Union is moving in the other by deepening ties across the continent. At the same time, we cannot lose sight of significant challenges of AfCTFA which is the implementation, equity and infrastructure. Beyond trade, the pact also addresses the movement of persons and labour, trade in services, investment, intellectual property rights and competition policy, possibly e-commerce, competition, investment and intellectual property. When African countries trade with themselves they exchange more manufactured and processed goods, have more knowledge transfer, and create more value. Where does local manufacturing fit into the AfCTFA agreement?

Manufacturing in Africa is growing but there is a misconception that manufacturing in Africa is only profitable if manufactured products are sold outside the continent. Manufacturing on the continent is concentrated in only a small number of countries. Increased urbanization and access to electricity has increased the demand for manufactured goods and the continent’s capacity to produce them. Africa has seen local manufacturing from car assembly to ceramics, textiles, mattresses, and industrial production is taking off. Automation creates opportunity. Manufacturing companies can strategically involve themselves in developing infrastructure on the continent and use the latest tools and techniques to build functioning roads and ports. Private investment in African infrastructure can yield profits while contributing to the continent’s economic success especially if they partner with government initiatives.

The panel with discuss an update on AfCTFA, what has been implemented, trade and manufacturing across the African continent- how it is working and what still needs to done to execute the project launched in January.


RSVP with Elizabeth Haskins: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.