OrderPaperToday – For the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) to yield intended results, it must be backed by requisite legal frameworks, right policies, and robust implementation, the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has said.

He gave this stance when a delegation from the African Continental Free Trade Area, led by its newly elected Secretary General, Wamkele Keabetswe Mene, paid a courtesy visit to his office on Tuesday.

Nigeria entered into the agreement on July 7th, 2019, during the 12th Extra-Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government, in Niamey, Niger.

Represented by the Deputy Senate Leader, Ajayi Boroffice, Lawan explained that the country’s decision to go with the agreement was to benefit Africans on the continent and outside it.

Lawan’s Special Assistant on Press, Ezrel Tabiowo, gave proceedings of the event in a press statement.

The President of the red chamber stated that the AfCFTA is important because aside facing the challenges of unemployment, and underemployment, which have been a trigger for both regular and irregular migration, the economies of African countries have been characterized by low productivity, reduced efficiency, and the problem of limited resources.

As a result, Lawan described the agreement as “a step in the right direction for the growth of African economies, through limited restrictions, leading to the stimulation of trade, commerce, and industry.”

“In signing the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), and depositing the instrument with the African Union Commission, our countries made a statement on the determination of our collective economic fate. This fate is in our hands, through requisite legal frameworks, right policies, and a robust implementation.

“The initial momentum from the signing of the agreement needs to be continued, for a greater continental impact, to benefit Africans, both on the continent and outside it”, he said.

He further noted that the country’s Office for Trade Negotiations responsible for managing, coordinating, and leading all trade and trade related negotiations will manage Nigeria’s side of the agreement.

“Nigeria’s action in signing was not just an evidence of our commitment to the spirit of Africa, but a sign of our trust in a unified economic growth. The multiple benefit of the arrangement is also not lost on us.”

“As the biggest market and economy on the continent, we have a strategic role to play in the evolution and stabilization of the African economy. We are ready to expand the possibilities through our status, with your confidence in us, and the demands of posterity,” he added.


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