UNECA, Morocco in talks concerning African Continental Free Trade Area

On Tuesday 29th of January, the executive secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Vera Songwe and Morocco’s foreign affairs and international cooperation minister, Nasser Bourita engaged in talks regarding the African Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA), in Rabat.

Vera Songwe said the agreement would create access to a two-billion-person market and promote African economic integration.

“We also talked about the importance of digitization and its role in free trade areas because many of our exchanges will take place on digital platforms,” said Vera Songwe.

Other matters discussed during the meeting include the UN Conference of African Ministers of Finance, billed to hold in Marrakech in March, “whose agenda will concentrate on taxation and digitization,” Songwe said.

The CFTA treaty was signed in March 2018 at the 10th extraordinary session of the African Union Assembly in Kigali, Rwanda. So far, 12 countries, including Morocco, have ratified the agreement. Ten more countries are expected to join by March 2019 before the CFTA comes into force.

By 2022, the CFTA would increase African trade by 52 percent as envisaged by the UN Economic Commission for Africa.