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Integration along the Abuja road map: A progress report

Jaime de Melo (), Mariem Nouar and Jean-Marc Solleder

No 103, WIDER Working Paper Series from World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER)

Abstract: This paper reviews integration among the eight African Regional Economic Communities by comparing their characteristics and progress with three other South–South Regional Integration Arrangements. Three conclusions emerge: (i) slow progress towards meeting overly ambitious objectives; (ii) small changes in the destination of trade across all Regional Economic Communities, indicative of persistent high trade costs and few new manufactures products destined for geographically close markets; and (iii) compared with other South–South Regional Integration Arrangements, the Regional Economic Communities include a high number of provisions not covered in Word Trade Organization negotiations, but these have low legal enforceability. Reasons for this slow progress are explored in the paper.

Date: 2017
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