An agreement to lower barriers to trade and improve cross-border commerce in the SADC should be implemented this year, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies says.
Investment policy makers and investment treaty negotiators from the 15-member Southern African Development Community (SADC) convened in Pretoria, South Africa recently to engage in clause by clause in-depth discussions of the draft SADC Model Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) Template and Commentary.
Southern African Development Community (SADC) integration is compounded by the ongoing Economic Partnership Agreements’ (EPAs) trade negotiations between the European Union (EU), a SADC official said on Wednesday.
Plans to create an African free trade area (FTA) by integrating three existing African trade blocs consisting of 26 countries by July 2014 are gaining momentum. The aim is to create a free market of 525 million people with an output of US$1 trillion making it a global player.
Plans to create a 26-nation free trade area by integrating three existing African trade blocs by July 2014 are on track and the only major sticking point is likely to be harmonising rules of origin, the three blocs said on Friday.
Strengthening bilateral trade and investment relations with African countries was a key trade and economic strategy for South Africa, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies told the sixth Africa Economic Forum in Cape Town this week.
First round of negotiations to establish the $1 trillion Tripartite Free Trade Area (FTA) covering 27 countries in eastern and southern Africa are scheduled to start next month, the head of the taskforce spearheading the process has said.
As South Africa moves to bolster industrialisation efforts within its own borders, the planned roll out of a giant free trade area across Africa may hit a snag when it comes to negotiating about trade in manufactured goods between member countries, the Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies said yesterday.
African heads of state have ambitious plans to create a free trade zone, encompassing 26 countries and more than 600 million people on the continent. But economic experts warn the project is a bold step that comes with a plethora of legal, administrative and political hurdles. Others suggest the plan might be a pie in the sky.
Intra-regional trade is really pathetic within the Southern African Development Community, says United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Senior Regional Agriculture Programme Manager Cecilia Kuphe.
South Africa and the European Union said on Thursday that they will give priority to concluding the EU-Southern African Development Community Economic Partnership Agreement negotiations.
The song of Southern African Development Community (SADC) regional integration is sung so loudly that even the deaf can hear it. But my recent experience in Windhoek, Namibia tends to prove that the reality on the ground does not match the rhetoric.
It is not certain that an African free trade area will further regional integration or deepen the existing inequality between countries.
Weariness surrounds the negotiations on an Economic Partnership Agreement regulating trade access between Southern Africa and the European Union.
A market access regulation giving SADC states, including Botswana, duty and quota-free access to the European Union is expected to elapse soon, potentially squeezing the affected states out of the world’s biggest market for beef, minerals, textiles and other products.
Southern African Development Community (SADC) Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) negotiations are ongoing while efforts are at an advanced stage to consolidate and harmonise market access arrangements for the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), reported Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Tjekero Tweya in Parliament last Thursday.
At the Chirundu border, along the north-south transport corridor between Zimbabwe and Zambia, commercial trucks used to wait five days to get clearance. Now, they can get through in a matter of hours.
Non-tariff barriers (NTBs) are still the biggest stumbling block to countries raising current low levels of intra-regional trade.
It is referred to as the “Grand Free Trade Area” or the Tripartite Free Trade Agreement, and true to its name it will be one of the largest free trade areas in the developing world when it becomes a reality. The 26-nation free trade area encompassing countries from Egypt to South Africa and three existing free trade blocs will be a very important platform for countries to engage and invest.
Negotiations for the establishment of a grand free trade area by three African regional economic communities are scheduled to start soon following the launching of the process by a Tripartite Summit that ended last week in Johannesburg, South Africa.