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SOL | 5 July 2019
Civil society dialogue on Africa’s meeting of 28 June 2019
Comments of Jacques Berthelot ([email protected])
Caution: At the time of concluding this analysis,we learnt that Nigerian Government has finally decided to sign the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) on 7 July 2019 in Niamey. This is arising from the report of the Presidential Steering Committee on Impact and Readiness of Nigeria on the AfCFTA which has finally favoured the President to proceed with the signing of the Agreement. The decision to sign raises some questions, but which does not call into question the critical analysis made below of the AfCFTA, the Task Force Rural Africa (TFRA) and the EPAs (Economic Partnership Agreements). According to a source close to the Nigerian government, the signing of the AfCFTA does not change in way the decision of Nigeria regarding the signing of the regional EPA. Notwithstanding the current decision, there may be some difficulties or even impossibilities of implementing the AfCFTA which could lead all the African States that have signed or even ratified it to refocus fairly quickly on deeper regional integration within their Regional Economic Communities (RECs). The European Commission on the other hand should understand the need to meet its commitments on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement on global warming within the context of industrialization, job creation, migration and poverty nexus, while effectively combating at source the influx of immigrants it does not want to welcome and the increase in insecurity in Africa and in the EU linked to the expansion of terrorist movements.
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