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AfCFTA secretariat set to establish protocol on digital trade this month, says Wamkele Mene

AfCFTA secretariat set to establish protocol on digital trade this month, says Wamkele Mene

Asaase Radio | 25th January 2024

By Joseph Appiah-Dolphyne

The secretary general of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, has said the secretariat is set to establish a protocol on digital trade this month.

Mene said the protocol on digital trade is aimed at supporting the African youth to thrive in the continent’s digital space.

Speaking at the opening of the Africa Prosperity Dialogues at the Peduase Presidential Lodge, Mene said, “… we have established a protocol on investments to protect not primarily foreign investors but to protect African investors… so we will conclude a protocol on women and youth in trade and also conclude the protocol on digital trade this month.

He added, “The protocol on digital trade positions us to harness the benefits of Africa’s digital economy for the inclusion of young Africans who are at the cutting edge of digital innovation and who require the regulatory support for them to thrive in the Africa digital market.

Mene said over the last three years, the AfCFTA has recorded tremendous success in ensuring that “the vision of the founding fathers does indeed become a reality”

He said, “As we speak, we have developed the AfCFTA tariff book which enables the private sector to determine with certainty the tariffs that apply to the products they want to export.”

“… we also have the rules of origin manual for the very first time. As an African continent, we are able to apply Rules of Origin that are harmonized to enable an exporter from Kenya to export to Malawi with a great deal of certainty of the market that they are exporting to…

He said there is a need to develop an African private sector strategy identifying sectors such as agriculture, pharmaceuticals, transport and logistics to grow.

“We recognise that many challenges remain that is why the partnerships that we have developed with the Africa Business Council, AFDB and Afreximbank to ensure that we mobilise the necessary resources to ensure that this dream becomes a reality.

Mene concluded that “It is time that as Africans we begin to tell our own stories, narrating our own challenges; challenges which I believe are opportunities”

The three-day event ends on Saturday 27 January 2024 and will have as its overarching focus the need to propose concrete measures which will lead to Africans achieving prosperity for the African continent.
The event is under the theme, “Delivering Prosperity in Africa: Produce, Add Value and Trade”

 source: Asaase Radio