A recent report from Standard Chartered Bank Group suggests that due to the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA), exports within Africa could hit $1 trillion by 2035.
The report, named “Future of Trade 2023,” emphasizes AFCFTA’s crucial role in boosting trade among African nations and fostering long-term economic growth in the region.
Sunil Kaushal, the CEO for Africa & Middle East at Standard Chartered, highlighted in the report that AFCFTA serves as a vital component for Africa’s economy, especially after the challenges posed by the global pandemic. He stressed the need for a strong economic and social structure that can endure external shocks without hindering the significant strides made in the past three decades.
Kaushal emphasized how the pandemic caused dwindling foreign reserves, challenges in acquiring vaccines, disruptions in key industries and supply chains, and difficulties in raising capital across African markets. He identified AFCFTA as part of the solution to these issues.
The majority of African nations have already ratified AFCFTA, and once fully enacted, it is expected to facilitate and stimulate trade within Africa, thereby promoting sustainable economic development.