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The Advent of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement as a Tool for Development

Omphemetse S. Sibanda, Sr

Foreign Trade Review, 2021, vol. 56, issue 2, 216-224

Abstract: Modelled on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), signed at the Extraordinary Summit of the African Union, which convened in Kigali, Rwanda, on 21 March 2018, is designed to facilitate a single continental trade regulation and integration framework for trade disciplines and intentioned to boost intra-Africa trade. AfCFTA came on the backdrop of not less than eight regional economic communities (RECs), which are loosely regulated. The study finds that AfCFTA can become a beacon of development in the African continent, provided an array of issues including addressing the multiplicity of RECs, putting in place a Development-focused migration and labour policy or developing a side labour agreement similar to that of NAFTA to address other issues like harmonisation of treatment and conditions of workforce and pursuing industrialisation that will help manage the negative spillovers of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). JEL Codes: C23, F10, F13, F14, F15, F17, F19, K33, K41

Keywords: AfCFTA; Intra-Africa Trade; RECs; job creation; labour mobility and protection; liberalisation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1177/0015732521995171

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