State House Press Office – 2019-02-10 14:33:21

Government

ZAMBIA SIGNS AFRICA CONTINENTAL FREE TRADE AREA Addis Ababa- Sunday 10th February 2019 President Edgar Lungu has signed the African Continental Free Trade Area(AfCFTA). President Lungu signed the protocal which was witnessed His Excellency Albert M. Muchanga, African Union Commissioner for Trade and Industry, signed on behalf of the African Union. The President said Zambia will now work towards necessary processes required to ratify the agreement. The President said Zambia will now work towards necessary processes required to ratify the agreement. He said Zambia recognized the importance of the agreement as it was one that would liberalise trade of both goods and services for all African countries . Zambia witnessed the declaration of the AfCTA in Kigali Rwanda in 2018. President Lungu said as a committed member of the African Union Zambia will endeavour to implement programs and projects of the AU. The AfCTA will now be sent for ratification through Zambia’ institutional mechanism. Zambia is already in wide free trade areas through the 19 member SADC states and through the 21 Comesa member states. The AfCFTA aims to create a single continental market for goods and services, with free movement of business persons and investments, and thus pave the way for accelerating the establishment of the Continental Customs Union and the African customs union. It also intends to expand intra African trade through better harmonization and coordination of trade liberalization and facilitation regimes and instruments across RECs and across Africa in general. The AfCFTA will help resolve the challenges of multiple and overlapping memberships and expedite the regional and continental integration processes. It will also help to enhance competitiveness at the industry and enterprise level through exploiting opportunities for scale production, continental market access and better reallocation of resources. Inutu Mupango Mwanza First Secretary/ Press Zambia Embaasy Addis Ababa Ethiopia.

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