The Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is set to launch on 30th May. If every African country joins, it’s expected to be one of the world’s largest single markets, accounting for $4 trillion in spending and investment across the 54 countries.
The AfCFTA will give entrepreneurs across the continent access to a much larger market. It’s therefore important that young African entrepreneurs understand how the AfCFTA could benefit them and their ventures. As awareness is raised, entrepreneurs should begin crafting new trade roadmaps for their businesses, informed by the agreement.
It’s envisioned that the free trade area will lead to increased competition, innovation and prosperity for Africa’s people in the long term. But for the AfCFTA’s gains to be realized, entrepreneurs and policy-makers must be aligned. They must engage with each other to provide structure and clarity around how goods and services will move, and around the benefits that the agreement will bring to business. These discussions between entrepreneurs and the trade ministries of their country will also enable the review and updating of national trade policies, discussions which will benefit both the government and business communities.