The World Bank projects that East Africa would get richer under the African Continental Free Trade Area

  • The World Bank has noted that East Africa is set to benefit from the African Continental Free Trade Area.
  • Countries like Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda have been projected to grow significantly in their real income generated in the next few years. 
  • While data for Burundi, South Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of Congo are unavailable. 

According to the World Bank, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) has been well-designed to strengthen the economies of East Africa.

This will be accomplished, among other things, by lowering trade expenses related to trade facilitation, as well as decreasing the costs of non-tariff policies and non-tariff obstacles.

According to the executive director of the East African Business Council (EABC), Mr. John Bosco Kalisa, the implementation of AfCFTA’s policies is sure to boost the East African economy. The director stated, “the continental trade protocol is projected to increase real income for East Africans.”

For the East African Community (EAC) group, swift implementation of the continental trade agreement would be advantageous. Real income is anticipated to rise by 10% in Tanzania, the second-largest economy in the area, between 2021 and 2035.

Real income will rise by 11.8%, 3.8%t, and 3.6% in Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda, respectively. For three further EAC member states, Burundi, South Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, no statistics were available (DRC). This information was relayed by Mr. Kalisa last week during a private sector sensitization workshop on the AfCFTA agreement, in Nairobi, Kenya.

The two-day workshop on trade-in goods protocol was organized by EABC as part of its GIZ funding program. The implementation of the trade treaty, according to EABC’s goodwill ambassador for logistics and transport Auni Bhaij, will boost intra-African commerce in manufactured products.

Tanzania’s and Kenya’s intra-AfCFTA export shares will increase as their total world exports are projected to rise by 28% and 43%, respectively, for the EAC. Uganda and Rwanda are expected to have similar projections of 29% and 33%, respectively.

The AfCFTA agreement, according to Mucai Kunyiha, director of the EABC board, was a manifest demonstration of the African nation’s commitment to the new system. “They have shown commitment to doing more trade and investments among themselves,” Mucai Kunyiha said.

55 companies from Kenya attended the session in Nairobi to learn about the AfCFTA Trade in Goods Protocol and its important annexes. Rules of Origin, Tariff Concession, and Non-Tariff Barriers are the annexes, together with their consequences for firms in the EAC bloc.

The AfCFTA agreement aims to increase intra-African commerce by gradually removing tariffs on more than 90 African items.

The elimination of non-tariff barriers and trade restrictions on products and services, respectively, are also a part of the goal. The EAC’s goods exports to Africa were $7.9 billion, or 42% of the overall EAC goods exports to the globe ($18.7 billion).


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