Industrialisation and Trade Corner
Harnessing productive sectors’ through value chains to enhance intra-African trade and regional integration
Integrating Africa is the AfDB Group’s blog on regional integration in Africa. It chronicles the issues arising from African countries’ efforts as they work to pool resources and integrate their economies for the development of their regional and individual economies. Read More
Next time you pick up sporting gear or a pair of jeans in a U.S. mall, do check the label. It may have been made in Lesotho, a small, mountainous and land-locked country completely surrounded by South Africa, with a population of around two million.
Ten years is a very short time in the global economy, and by all accounts a decade is all that is left of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). While the United States’ unilateral preferential access programme for Africa has been reauthorized three times since it began in 2000, it looks very unlikely to be extended beyond 2025.
Free movement is back on the continent’s policy agenda and within its integration discourse. Such discourse has also been buttressed by several encouraging developments over the last year or so, notably the launch in early 2016 of a new Africa Visa Openness Report; the move by several African countries to offer visas on arrival to citizens of AU member states; and the July 2016 launch of the African passport.
To all those who are convinced that regional integration requires strong political will and committed leadership, African Heads of State showed just that when they were presented with a single African passport at the 27th African Union Summit in Kigali, Rwanda. The proposal to implement a single passport for Africa and ensure free movement of people is part of the African Union’s 2063 Agenda.
Last month, from January 19 to 23, the African Union mission, in collaboration with the African Ambassador Group of Washington, DC and the African Development Bank with the support of the Africa Trade Fund project on boosting US-Africa trade, hosted a high-level delegation of African Ministers of Trade focused on promoting the expeditious renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) – a key component within the architecture of US-Africa trade.
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