Developing Africa, AfCFTA project : Over $4 Billion for Pilot phase

The programme, which will last for 25 years, has earmarked more than $50 billion for all African countries.

The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), known in French as the Zone de libre échange continentale africaine (ZLECAF), is a landmark economic initiative that aims to create a single market for goods and services across the 54 countries of the African Union. On Wednesday 3 April. AfCFTA authorities were in Douala to launch the Growth Road Programme, which will run for the next 25 years. The programme will include the construction of roads, industries, the opening of trade zones, capacity building and the general welfare of the people of Africa.
Twelve African countries have been selected for the pilot phase, which will last five years and cost about $4 billion. Presenting the project in Douala, the head of the delegation, Raoul Patrick Nougoum, explained that AfCFTA countries lack industries and even where industries exist, they do not have sufficient production capacity. The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), he said, is a great opportunity for African countries to lift 30 million people out of extreme poverty and raise the incomes of 68 million others who live on less than $5.50 a day. With the implementation of the AfCFTA, he said, trade facilitation measures that cut red tape and simplify customs procedures would generate $292 billion of the $450 billion in potential income gains. Implementing the AfCFTA, he said, would help usher in the kind of deep reforms needed to boost long-term growth in African countries. He regretted that the growth rate in Africa is generally low, so the project will go a long way to raising the growth rate in Africa as a whole. 
On his part, Professor Awono Onana regretted that Africa is lacking in so many areas incl...



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