Monday, February 14, 2022: The Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) was launched in 2018 and ratified in Niger in July 2019. The Agreement promises to create a US$ 2.5 trillion market by removing trade barriers and enabling the movement of Africans across borders. The Agreement provides Sudan with an opportunity to pursue alternative markets to export value-added goods and services. The “Development of national AfCFTA implementation strategies for Sudan” is part of the regional effort by AU-IBAR/ICPALD /IGAD to develop strategies for participating in the AfCFTA at the national level. The Strategy identifies ways of achieving the twin objectives of expanding agricultural exports within the IGAD/COMESA region and exporting high-value products to other RECs. A national workshop was held to validate Sudan draft national AfCFTA strategy and discuss on how to expedite the ratification process. This report summarizes the highlights of the stakeholder’s workshop.
Dr. Ameha Sebsibe on behalf of the ICPALD Director and Mr John Oppong-Otoo on behalf of AUIBAR Director made welcoming statements. The validation workshop was officially opened by the Mr. Mutasim Makawi Mohamed Ali; Director General of International Relations; Ministry of Trade and Supply. He thanked AU-IBAR and ICPALD-IGAD for supporting the initiative to develop strategies for Sudan and appreciated the level of the private sector participation at the validation workshop. The workshop was financed by LIVE2 African project.
The objective of the workshop was to review, enrich and validate the draft report and fine-tune the proposed strategies to ensure that Sudan benefits from the Agreement. The following presentations were made and discussed
- Status of AfCFTA negotiations and implementation in Sudan
- Presentation of the draft National AfCFTA Strategy
- Expectations and the role of the private sectors in the process
- Proposed Strategic objectives and actions
- The consultant closely works with Sudan AfCFTA focal, IGAD and AUIBAR and incorporate the inputs and align the strategy document with the agreed strategic objectives and submit the revised validated version of the strategy
- To expedite the ratification process by advocating and bringing the two councils
- The AfCFTA focal /MOT/ shall create awareness to the private sectors on the AfCFTA agreement; and enhance their involvement