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
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.
The global medical tourism market has been estimated at US $10.5 billion in 2012 and is projected to grow to US $32.5 billion by 2019. While there are uncertainties about the total number of medical tourists globally (as distinct from spa and wellness tourists), increasingly more Africans leave the continent in search of health care, and more tourists visit African countries to receive health care.
Neo-liberal scholars and experts of regional integration highlight the alleged virtues of common markets, where capital and goods flow freely within economically integrated regions. Yet, they tend to forget that the other key factor of production, labour, is arguably even more important in supporting the creation of sustainable regional economic communities (RECs). Indeed, labour mobility may allow for cultural and social exchanges (which are not produced by mere flows of capital) and further support the diversification of national economies.
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