Africa currently has the lowest intra-regional trade in the world. Increasing trade between African countries offers great potential for building sustainable economic development and integration, including creating higher-wage jobs and unlocking greater business opportunities.

This session took stock of past and current initiatives and agreements in Africa to promote regional integration and continental trade. With a particular focus on the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA), the session explored the opportunities and challenges for LDCs to benefit from growing continental trade in the future. It focused on the trade policies, regulations, and institutions needed at national levels for LDCs to enhance the economies of scale, structural transformation, diversification, efficiency, and productivity boosts that continental trade would require.

Moderator:

  • Judith Fessehaie, Trade and Development Manager, International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD)

Speakers:

  • Kanayo Awani, Managing Director, Intra-African Trade Initiative, AFREXIMBANK
  • Joy Kategekwa, Head, UNCTAD regional office for Africa
  • David Luke, African Trade Policy Centre, UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)
  • Michel Sebera, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Rwanda

The Global Forum on Inclusive Trade for LDCs would not have been possible without the financial support of the EIF Trust Fund Donors and additional Forum sponsors, including International Islamic Tade Finance CorporationTrade Facilitation Agreement Facility and German Development Cooperation