Ethiopia to commence AfCFTA trial implementation soon
Ena | 20th December 2023
Ethiopia will begin the trial implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement soon, according to Ministry of Trade and Regional Integration.
The product tariffs the country has set to participate in AfCFTA has also been accepted by the Council of African Trade Ministers, Trade and Regional Integration Minister Gebremeskel Challa told ENA.
The African Continental Free Trade Area, a flagship project of Agenda 2063 aimed at creating a single African market which creates world’s largest free trade area by bringing together the 55 countries with a population of about 1.3 billion and a combined GDP of approximately 3.4 trillion USD, was launched two years ago.
The free trade area is intent on enhancing trade cooperation of African signatory countries by gradually reducing tariffs and other tax related challenges, he elaborated.
Ethiopia has been making preparations to engage in implementation of the trade agreement with a view to ensuring its benefits by diversifying export products.
The minister said the Government of Ethiopia has carried out various activities, including expansion of infrastructures, identification export product items and pricing of products, among other.
Accordingly, the product tariffs prepared based on study were recently approved by the Council of African Ministers of Trade.
Gebremeskel stated that negotiations on tariffs of imported products have also been underway with member countries.
“Some 48 countries have submitted tariffs of their goods and products. We also submitted our respective tariff offers last week and it has been accepted by the African trade ministers. AfCFTA is a great opportunity for Ethiopia as it helps the country to reach the markets of 1.3 billion people by using various logistics infrastructures, including the Ethiopian Airlines.”
According to the minister, the implementation of AfCFTA is underway with trial levels in 10 African countries. Ethiopia will also commence implementing the agreement within a few months.
The countries with which the trial implementation of AfCFTA agreement would be carried out and the type of products to be traded will be decided in the future through bilateral negotiations and other discussions.