Andre: Familiarise yourself with AfCFTA

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Andre: Familiarise yourself with AfCFTA

SWAKOPMUND – Erongo governor Neville Andre has urged the Namibian business community to familiarise themselves with the Africa Continental Free Trade Area Agreement to fully benefit from 

it. He was speaking at the opening of the AFCFTA awareness campaign that was launched in Swakopmund on Friday. 

The campaign was hosted by the trade ministry, in partnership with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), to share the necessary information and ensure that traders are well-equipped
and ready to trade under the AfCFTA. 

The AfCFTA is an ambitious trade pact that was established in 2018 with 54 signatory countries to promote inter-Africa trade. 

The start of trading under the AfCFTA was officially launched in January 2021 – but meaningful commercial trade is yet to commence.

The agreement is aimed at boosting intra-African trade and enhancing regional and continental value chains through the establishment of viable and competitive industries in the continent.

According to Andre, the agreement could culminate in innovation, employment opportunities and wealth creation to the citizenry of the African people, especially women and youth.

“It is, therefore, imperative for Namibian business communities to prepare and take full advantage of the benefits offered under the trade agreement. They should be able to identify importers of goods and services, increase production capacities, diversify and add value to our raw materials and ensure our product is finding its place of exports on the African continent,” Andre said.

He added AfCFTA is one of the flagship projects of the African Union’s Agenda 2063, a key programme and initiative that has been identified to accelerate growth and sustainable development across the continent.

“The significance of the AfCFTA cannot be overstated – and reaping the benefits 

depends on how well we embrace these opportunities. The onus lies in our hands to take full advantage and boost the intra-continental trade. 

Also speaking at the awareness campaign, Alka Bhatia, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Namibia Country Office, said it is important that each and every Namibian understands what continental trade agreement is about.

“As such, this session could not have come at a better time than now, which is 

critical for ensuring that no one is left behind. This is especially important 

if we achieve inclusive, resilient and sustainable development for all  Namibians.”