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Working Paper 78 - Trade Policy and Performance in Sub - Saharan Africa since the 1980s


The majority of African countries have liberalised their trade regimes during the past two decades. Some countries began this process in the early 1980s, but most have only implemented sustained and significant reduction in barriers to imports since the late 1980s or early 1990s. The major trade liberalisation reforms in almost all countries were unilateral, reforms made by the country acting alone, rather than being implemented as part of an agreement with trading partners. However, various agreements with trading partners have ‘locked in’ the reform efforts.

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