The National Action Committee on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) has kicked off a nationwide awareness and sensitisation tour to prepare Nigeria in taking advantage of the regional trade agreement.
According to the Communication Coordinator of the committee, Zakari Jimeta, the AfCFTA sensitisation tour would kick off from Kaduna State to Bauchi State and all other 34 states, including the Federal Capital Territory.
The exercise will include meetings with public and private sector stakeholders, including trade and professional associations in each of the states.
The Secretary, the National Action Committee on AfCFTA, Francis Anatogu, disclosed in statement that the committee’s mandate was to coordinate the activities of the private and public sector at federal and subnational levels to implement AfCFTA for the benefit of Nigerians.
He added that their strategy was to work with the states based on their areas of comparative advantages and priorities as a way of building up our national export trade and creating jobs at the grassroots level.
“The core objective of the AfCFTA is to create a single market for goods, services, and free movement of persons in order to deepen the economic integration of the African continent,” Anatogu said.
The statement added that the committee was working with relevant agencies to establish structures and processes to implement the rules of origin and other arrangements enabling businesses to commence trading under AfCFTA terms.
The AfCFTA is expected to deliver an integrated continental market of 1.27 billion consumers with an aggregate GDP of $3.4 trillion.
Nigeria signed the trade agreement in Niamey, Niger on 7 July 2019 to promote intra-African trade with other African countries. On November 11, 2020, the Federal Executive Council approved the ratification of the agreement while trading under the AfCFTA commenced on January 1, 2021.