President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will later today, Monday, open a 2-day national conference on the implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) in Accra.
The Conference will bring together key stakeholders in Ghana to discuss Ghana’s strategies and programme interventions that will ensure that the country reaps benefits from the AfCFTA.
The Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah disclosed this at a press briefing on Sunday, saying that the theme of the program is “harnessing the benefits of the African Continental Free Trade Area for a Ghana Beyond Aid”.
The Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU) selected Ghana as the host country for the Secretariat in July at the 12th AU Extraordinary Summit held in Niamey, the capital of Niger.
The core mandate of the Secretariat will be to implement the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement, which has since been ratified by 25 member states.
Following that announcement, many Ghanaians especially economists urged the government to ensure that new programmes are put in place to ensure that the hosting of the Secretariat leaves a positive impression on the country’s economy.
Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said President Akufo-Addo at the conference will use the opportunity to articulate Ghana’s vision for the AfCFTA for a Ghana Beyond Aid.
Participants of the conference will include Senior Policy Makers, Parliamentarians, the Business Community, Academia, Representatives of Civil Society Organizations, Development Partners and the Media from Ghana and Beyond.
Some benefits expected to be derived from implementing the AfCFTA include an increase in intra-African trade through better harmonization and coordination of trade within the African continent and addressing the challenge of small fragmented markets in Africa by creating a single continental market which will lead to economies of scale.
It will also add value to Africa’s abundant natural resources and promote economic diversification and industrialization and develop regional value chains and facilitate cross border investments in Africa.
The AfCFTA is also expected to attract Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) into Africa with strong regional and local content to help address foreign exchange constraints.