President Buhari to sign AfCFTA


President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the recommendations of the Presidential Committee on the Impact and Readiness Assessment of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.

This was revealed in a statement released by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu on Wednesday.

According to Shehu, President Buhari will be signing the Phase one of the agreement at the Mid-Year Coordination Meeting of the African Union and 12th Extraordinary Summit on AfCFTA in Niamey, Niger Republic in a few days’ time.

In accepting the reports as submitted, Shehu said the President made it clear that Nigerian government will be seeking to include terms that engender the development of policies that promote African production, among other benefits.

“Africa, therefore, needs not only a trade policy but also a continental manufacturing agenda.

“Our vision for intra-African trade is for the free movement of `made in Africa goods’. That is, goods and services made locally with dominant African content in terms of raw materials and value addition,” President Buhari said.

“If we allow unbridled imports to continue, it will dominate our trade. The implication of this is that coastal importing nations will prosper while landlocked nations will continue to suffer and depend on aid,’’ Buhari added.

A country that signs the first level will proceed to country level discussions leading to treaties after safeguards are agreed to.

When Nigeria signs the trade deal, it will bring the total number of African Union states that has signed to 53, leaving Benin Republic and Eritrea as the only countries not approving the agreement.



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