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AEC 2010 - Developing Professional Services in Africa through Regional Integration

05-Oct-2010

Policymakers in Eastern and Southern African countries have recognized that weaknesses in their services sectors impede growth. Recent studies have revealed a strong relationship between African firms’ productivity and their access to services (Arnold et al., 2006). In parallel with reform of backbone services like telecommunications, banking and transport, governments are beginning to prioritize reform of professional services, including by creating more integrated regional markets. However, relative to the process of regional integration in East Africa, regional integration in Southern Africa is much less advanced. This paper attempts to remedy the large gaps in information on policies and market conditions in professional services, namely accounting, engineering and legal services in Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda in Eastern Africa, and in Botswana, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, South Africa and Zambia in Southern Africa, with the objective of facilitating concrete steps towards reform at the national level and at accelerating regional integration in Africa.

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