Mr. Wamkele Mene, Secretary General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), said that political stability on the African continent is the surest way to support the private sector and multilateral investments as well as cross-border trade. .
Speaking to Ghana News Agency in an interview, Mr. Mene said it was important for countries on the continent, especially those in ECOWAS and the East African Community ( EAC), to ensure that changes of government are constitutional and can support predictable political environments for the localization of the AfCFTA.
He said intra-continental trade was estimated to generate $3.4 trillion in gross domestic product (GDP) and raise incomes by 7%,
It would also increase trade by up to $70 billion and lift more than 100 million people out of poverty by 2040.
Most of the gains, however, would be generated by the manufacturing and services sector.
Mr. Mene stressed that African governments must tap into local capital markets to help curb illicit financial flows outside the continent.
He said the AfCFTA aims to create an integrated market through some fundamental actions that would guide the implementation.
This, he said, was geared towards the diversification and development of manufacturing and industrial value chains by member countries.
Reducing tariffs as well as removing non-tariff barriers over time would also help a lot, he noted.
In addition, the absorption of new technologies and the need to diversify manufactures to reap the benefits of the AfCFTA depended on labor market factors such as productivity, health conditions, mobility, innovation and duration. .
Mr. Mene said the Regional Economic Community (REC) was established to foster integration and form the foundation for the implementation of the AfCFTA.