March 16, 2006
Saharan states call for free trade agreements
The Saharan states have called for free trade agreements to help the region achieve peace, stability and prosperity.
Addressing participants at the 13th executive council meeting of the Community of Sahel-Saharan States (COMESSA) on Wednesday, the organization’s deputy secretary-general, Ali Gaddaye Adoukhaur, said that as a regional economic organization, COMESSA did not only hope to build a free trade zone, but also a common market for agricultural products. This would allow the free movement of people and property and establish an economic organization covering the whole continent.
COMESSA’s 13th executive council meeting was being held in Rabat, the Moroccan capital, from March 15th to 17th. Sixty-six government officials from its member states were participating in the meeting.
Founded in 1998, COMESSA now consists of 23 member states and covers 41 percent of Africa’s territory and 43 percent of the continent’s population. Presently, it ranks as the biggest regional economic community in Africa.