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African leaders are arriving in Rwanda’s capital Kigali to sign a deal which could see the establishment of a free trade area on the continent.
Zimbabwe’s president tweeted pictures showing himself addressing the talks:
— President of Zimbabwe (@edmnangagwa) March 20, 2018
Under a free trade area agreement, all 54 countries in Africa would have to agree to reduce the trade tariffs and import quotas between each other and boost intra-African trade.
The African continental free trade area has been talked about for years, if not decades.
Those excited about the deal say it’ll boost trade and create jobs.
But the process has already seen some glitches.
Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari isn’t going to Kigali – officials from Africa’s largest economy said more time was needed to discuss the deal with business leaders back home.
There are already red flags being raised by the unions – they say unfettered access by foreign workers to their labour markets would cause problems, as people gravitate towards the continent’s stronger economies.
There’s also a concern that countries with comparatively weaker import regulations could be used by a country outside Africa as a springboard to move cheaper goods into the continent.
Ramaphosa: We must rid ourselves of this colonial mentality that demands we rely on other people’s currency. Perhaps the day, the hour and the moment could have arrived for us to create a single African currency #AfCFTA2018
— Muvenda mubikwa na ive🇿🇦 🇧🇼 🇿🇼 (@MokopaneAlba) March 20, 2018
— Richard Kwizera (@Muzungu4) March 20, 2018