On September 13, the Commission for the African Union (AUC) and USAID kicked off a three-day workshop to strengthen knowledge exchange and networks among African trade practitioners, with a focus on best practices in trade information and trade finance. The discussed best practices and recommendations will inform AUC initiatives designed to boost intra-African trade and solidify integration, such as the establishment of an African Trade Observatory, as envisioned under the policy of Boosting Intra-African Trade (BIAT) and Continental Free Trade Area architecture. The objective of the BIAT initiative is anchored in the aspirations of Agenda 2063 -- the Africa we want -- the continent’s transformation agenda
Improved trade finance and trade information are two of seven “clusters” that the AUC has identified as crucial components for boosting intra African trade. Individual regional economic communities within Africa have found efficient public and private sector models for sharing information and expanding secure, flexible mechanisms for the payment of good and services. These promising models now need to be extended continent-wide. The African Trade Observatory is the mechanism for doing so.
“I am confident that enhancing availability and accessibility to trade information will help the private sector grasp the many opportunities of intra-African trade.” HE Amb. Albert M. MUCHANGA
USAID supports a Continental Free Trade Area and has several trade and investment hubs designed to improve the free movement of goods, capital and services between African countries. Deepening market integration leads to greater trade and provides the backbone for economic growth and job creation in Africa and in the U.S.
“I am convinced that increasing availability of trade finance for women and young entrepreneurs will enhance their capacity to boost intra-African trade,” said HE Amb. Albert M. MUCHANGA.
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About the partners
The African Union Commission
The African Union Commission (AUC) is the key organ playing a central role in the day-to-day management of the African Union. It represents the African Union (AU) and defends its interests; elaborates draft common positions of the Union; prepares strategic plans and studies for the consideration of the Executive Council; elaborates, promotes, coordinates and harmonizes the programmes and policies of the Union with those of the Regional Economic Communities (RECs); ensures the mainstreaming of gender in all programmes and activities of the Union.