The pan-African private sector, under the auspices of the African Business Council, says the start of trading under the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, presents enormous business opportunities for small and medium enterprises, women, and youths.
In a statement by AfBC’s Vice Chairman (who is also the president of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria), Mansur Ahmed, the council reiterated that AfCFTA presented an opportunity for Africa’s private sector to build the continent through manufacturing, distribution, transportation, health eco-systems, among others.
“It is a new year, and new opportunities are emerging. As manufacturers, traders, farmers, transporters, shippers, women’s business associations, and youths, here is our time. Let us go out there and grab the opportunities. It is time to feed Africa through agriculture, manufacturing, and promoting value chains. It is only through a united voice that we can have a transformation in Africa,” Ahmed said.
Also speaking, the interim Chairperson of AfBC, Dr. Amany Asfour, said AfCFTA would give the group the opportunity to drive its agenda.
“The AfCFTA gives us an opportunity to drive our agenda. For many years, the African business community has been individualistic in driving the continent’s agenda. It is an opportunity for us as the African Business Council to come together and support the implementation of AfCFTA. We are a united voice, and we can do this together,” Asfour said.
According to the Secretary General of the United Nations, Amina Mohammad, the proliferation of non-tariff barriers in Africa has often hindered intra-Africa trade.
“It is difficult to move cargo among African countries, and the online system on the monitoring, reporting, and elimination of non-tariff barriers will assist in the implementation of the AfCFTA, ” she said.
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