African Free Trade could lead a Covid-19 recovery
JOHANNESBURG - VICE-PRESIDENT of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Solomon Quaynor has said the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) could lead the recovery from the Covid-19 crisis.
However, this will not happen in one dramatic swoop, Quaynor added.
This was heard this week during a virtual discussion by industry experts focusing on resetting, retooling and restarting regional integration in Africa in the wake of the pandemic. History had demonstrated the success of countries and businesses that seize new opportunities during times of crisis, said Sukhwan Roh, commissioner of the Korea Customs Service (KCS).
“The Covid-19 pandemic has completely changed the health and livelihoods of individuals across the world in less than a year,” he said.
“Korea wishes to share all the achievements in system enhancement utilising new technologies with African countries.”
The joint webinar, organised on Tuesday by the AfDB and the KCS, looked at service sectors, e-commerce, digital platforms and value chain development as critical factors for accelerating trade and investment in Africa against the backdrop of the pandemic.
From the outset, the AfDB had lent strong support to the AfCFTA, financing the set-up of its secretariat as well as supporting member countries with technical assistance to comply with a range of AfCFTA regulations, said Quaynor.