How would an Africa-wide free trade agreement work for SA?

African Union (AU) heads of state are this week set to sign a declaration on the biggest trade agreement since the World Trade Organisation (WTO) was established.

Presidents, prime ministers, high-level officials and private-sector stakeholders are gathered at the 10th Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU) in Kigali.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, International Relations Minister Lindiwe Sisulu and Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies are in attendance.

Gugulethu Mhlungu spoke to analyst at the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) Liezel Louw Vaudran who explained what the African Continental Free Trade Area is.

The agreement is a framework agreement, so it really is the first of six phases that were in the Abuja road map toward a single trade zone, single currency, harmonisation of tariffs etc.

Liezel Louw Vaudran, analyst at the Institute for Security Studies

It's really just a political agreement to give some impetus to this continental free trade area.

Liezel Louw Vaudran, analyst at the Institute for Security Studies

Nigeria has refused to sign the declaration, with its Chief Trade Negotiator saying it was rejecting the agreement “in the national interest of a great and diverse country”.

There is that fear in Nigeria that if there is a free trade agreement then they will be completely flooded with consumer goods services from countries like South Africa.

Liezel Louw Vaudran, analyst at the Institute for Security Studies

Vaudran explains how the agreement will benefit South Africa and the rest of the continent.

South Africa is one of the winners of this continental free trade area because we are one of the most sophisticated industrialised economies, we are one of the biggest investors on the continent, we export a lot. So I think the feeling inside South Africa is very different from what Nigerans are feeling about it.

Liezel Louw Vaudran, analyst at the Institute for Security Studies

Economists say that if there is a continental free trade area that could boost trade up to 50%. It makes just so much more sense for African countries to trade with their neighbors then to be exporting raw materials to the EU, China and the US.

Liezel Louw Vaudran, analyst at the Institute for Security Studies

Click on the link below to listen to the full interview...


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
Cele should understand his role as the political head of police - ISS

Cele should understand his role as the political head of police - ISS

Bheki Cele was sworn in as Police Minister on Tuesday.

Rwandan doctor murdered in Cape Town

Rwandan doctor murdered in Cape Town

A 29-year old suspect arrested in connection with the murder of Raymond Dusabe, is due to appear in court on Wednesday.

ISS on Russian influence on ANC and could a Cyril win prevent another downgrade?

ISS on Russian influence on ANC and could a Cyril win prevent another downgrade?

Dr Jakkie Cilliers says if Cyril Ramaphosa wins the elections, he could avoid a downgrade by recalling Jacob Zuma in January.

How Zimbabwe's impeachment of Mugabe will work

How Zimbabwe's impeachment of Mugabe will work

ISS Senior Researcher Derek Matyszak breaks down the numbers and how the impeachment process will play out.

Political interference impacting negatively on crime fighting - ISS

Political interference impacting negatively on crime fighting - ISS

Stephen Grootes spoke to Dr Johan Burger senior researcher at the Institute for Security Studies (ISS).

Police performance plummets despite 50% budget increase - ISS

Police performance plummets despite 50% budget increase - ISS

Corruption Watch and ISS look at policing faces such challenges ahead of Tuesday's release of SA's annual crime stats.

SA's first ParaVolley team heading to African Championships

SA's first ParaVolley team heading to African Championships

South Africa's ParaVolley team will be travelling to Rwanda to compete in African Championships for the first time ever.

Rwanda pushes back against US second-hand clothes imports

Rwanda pushes back against US second-hand clothes imports

Ambassador Advisory's Refilwe Moloto tackles East Africa's local textile production being stifled by US imports.

Popular articles
No load shedding expected on Sunday says Eskom

No load shedding expected on Sunday says Eskom

Load shedding has been suspended for Sunday, but the system remains 'unpredictable'.

Open day season: How to choose the best school for your child

Open day season: How to choose the best school for your child

Parenting expert Nikki Bush has valuable pointers on what to keep in mind when matching your child to a school.

Zuma returns from Cuba, addresses 'hundreds' of supporters

Zuma returns from Cuba, addresses 'hundreds' of supporters

Former president Jacob Zuma arrived at OR Tambo International where supporters waited to give him a hero's welcome.

[WATCH LIVE] Joseph Shabalala's funeral service underway in Ladysmith

[WATCH LIVE] Joseph Shabalala's funeral service underway in Ladysmith

The music icon and Ladysmith Black Mambazo founder is being laid to rest in his home town in KwaZulu-Natal.

Load shedding to be suspended at 5pm, resumes on Sunday

Load shedding to be suspended at 5pm, resumes on Sunday

Eskom says 'improved generation system performance' will allow it to suspend load shedding at 5pm on Saturday.

[WATCH] Ndlovu Youth Choir's moving 'Homeless' tribute to Joseph Shabalala

[WATCH] Ndlovu Youth Choir's moving 'Homeless' tribute to Joseph Shabalala

The Ladysmith Black Mambazo founder will be laid to rest in Ladysmith on Saturday.

'High possibility' of load shedding continuing throughout Sunday

'High possibility' of load shedding continuing throughout Sunday

Stage 2 power cuts are scheduled until 6 am on Sunday, but Eskom says this could be extended.

 'When languages are being let go of in favour of English, we lose identity'

'When languages are being let go of in favour of English, we lose identity'

Joanne Joseph spoke to Play Africa founder and CEO Gretchen Wilson-Prangley on International Language Day.

'There is a stated commitment to deal with TRC cases but it's taking too long'

'There is a stated commitment to deal with TRC cases but it's taking too long'

Former commissioner Yasmin Sooka says it has been a 16-year battle trying to get the NPA to prosecute TRC-related cases.

We have invested heavily in driver and passenger safety - Uber

We have invested heavily in driver and passenger safety - Uber

Uber Sub-Saharan Africa general manager Alon Lit says their prices have not changed drastically since 2013.