Why Did Nigeria Not Sign The Free Trade Agreement

The free trade area can only enter into force if all protocols from at least 22 countries are finalized and ratified. Concerns outweigh possible opportunities, he continues: “Nigeria`s opposition to the signing of the AfCFTA was due to an initial reflection on whether to protect certain local industrial sectors that feared dilution by imports from neighbouring countries. The reality is that Nigeria`s economy is stronger than most of its neighbours, and we expect many of the same industries to be able to increase their exports rather than be diluted by imports. However, 11 countries, including the Nigerian and South African economic giants, did not sign the framework protocol in Kigali, although the two countries announced that they would join the train after further consultations with national stakeholders. What complicates matters further is that Africa was already divided into eight separate free trade zones and/or union unions, with different regulations. [Note 1] These regional bodies will continue to exist; The African Continental Free Trade Agreement aims firstly to remove barriers to trade between the various pillars of the African Economic Community and, finally, to use these regional organizations as building blocks of the ultimate goal of an African-wide customs union. [21] [30] [31] [32] You also get rid of quotas, so there is no limit to the amount of trade you can make. The $3,000 billion continental free trade area, with a population of 1.2 billion, was accepted by 44 countries on Wednesday, but Nigeria and South Africa, Africa`s largest economies, did not register, reducing its impact. Removing import duties could potentially boost intra-African trade by more than 50%, while a reduction in non-tariff barriers will double the volume of trade, notes the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA).

Rwandan President Paul Kagame, host of an AU summit convened after the first negotiations, said the meeting was a success after 44 African nations signed the creation of the free trade bloc in 18 months. With Nigeria`s signature, AfCFTA`s dream of increasing intra-African trade, currently below the continent`s trade volume with Europe, has taken a step forward. Currently, some of this intra-African trade ranges from fresh Seychelles fish to Angolan gasoline. The agreement was negotiated by the African Union (AU) and signed on 21 March 2018 by 44 of its 55 member states in Kigali, Rwanda. [15] [16] The agreement first requires members to remove tariffs on 90% of goods, allowing free access to goods, goods and services across the continent. [15] The UN Economic Commission for Africa estimates that the agreement will boost intra-African trade by 52% by 2022. [17] The proposal is expected to enter into force 30 days after ratification by 22 of the signatory states. [15] On 2 April 2019, The Gambia became the 22nd state to ratify the Convention[18] and on 29 April, the Sahrawi Republic tabled the 22nd filing of ratification instruments; The agreement entered into force on 30 May and entered its operational phase following a summit on 7 July 2019. [19] Trudi Hartzenberg, Executive Director of the Trade Law Centre, a South African-based think tank, says that while the free trade area could significantly improve competitiveness and promote intra-African trade, “it also requires strong technical leadership and capacity to help member states in future negotiations….