Sunday, February 25, 2024

Zambia committed to continental trade integration-President Lungu

Share

President Edgar Lungu has called for the acceleration of the development of modern border infrastructure and port facilities to support the continent’s transition to a Free Trade Area from January 1, 2021.

The Head of State said expediting the implementation of the continental infrastructure programme is necessary for the successful implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area. (ACFTA).

“As we proceed with opening of our borders, let us be mindful of the need to ensure that necessary accompanying facilities and procedures are in place to facilitate smooth trade amongst member states,” said President Lungu

President Lungu said this during the 13th Session of the African Union Extra Ordinary Virtual Summit on the operationalization of the ACFTA.

In a speech read on his behalf by Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, Christopher Yaluma, President Lungu said Zambia has already shown commitment to continental trade and integration agenda by giving cabinet approval for ratification of the CFTA agreement and was now awaiting parliamentary ratification.

President Lungu said while the continent starts trading as a free trade area on January 1, 2021, there is need to ensure that the Free Trade Area does not disadvantage any country.

“Zambia will support all efforts aimed at ensuring that the Africa Continental Free Trade Area benefits all participating African Union Member States and that no single country is disadvantaged as a result of implementing the trade liberalization reforms,” said President Lungu.

He said Zambia is open for business and investment and is hopeful that she will receive favourable tariff offers from other countries to her tariff offer of 90 % non-sensitive list of products.

He urged African countries to ensure that strategies are put in place that will increase the value of intra-Africa trade and accelerate national economic development and transformation.

President Lungu stressed that Africa needs to identify value chains that can effectively develop within the continent and spur economic growth at all levels.

He paid tribute to African leaders, government officials from all the 55 AU member countries and other stakeholders for the tireless efforts that have seen the realization of the Continental Free Trade Area.

President Lungu acknowledged that Africa has been hard hit by the Covid pandemic that has severely affected intra Africa Trade due to massive lockdowns.

He regretted that the region experienced a slump as resources meant for investments have been diverted towards supporting the fight against the coronavirus pandemic with reduced incomes due to declined demand for some products.

And speaking earlier ,during the official opening of the 13th Extra Ordinary Session, AU Chairperson President Cyril Ramaphosa urged the AfCFTA to support and advance the empowerment of African women in improving access to women in trading in the new free trade order that the continent has adopted.

President Ramaphosa said there is a need to facilitate greater trade for women and remove trade tariffs and other barriers.

The 13th, AU Extra Ordinary Summit welcomed newly elected Presidents into the fold namely Lazarious Chakwera of Malawi, Burundi’s Evariste Ndayishimiye, Wavel Ramkalawan of Seychelles, and Bah Ndaw of Mali.

ACFTA Secretary General Wamkele Mene announced that 54 countries had signed the CFTA treaty and 34 had already deposited instruments of ratification and 41 countries had already submitted tariff offers.

Mr Mene said it is time Africa stopped depending on a colonial economic model and structured its own market that will address and meet the needs of the African continent.

He said the AfCFTA Secretariat will work towards finalizing the establishment of a US$1 billion trade financing facility for the continent’s small and medium traders that will be underwritten by African governments and other international cooperating partners.

13 COMMENTS

  1. African Free Trade is a pipe dream because Africa has many brainless leaders. How do you explain the illegal mukula trade and the plunder of Kisenseli gold? Is that what you’ll take to the table? Only economies dominated by mzungu are doing well like South Africa and Kenya

    2
    2
  2. This is great development. Africa is uniting and this will threaten many western nations and also their stooges in the form of diasporans. The brainwashed diasporans will try and convince us that this is a bad thing because their masters there abroad have taught them to hate anything that leads to Africa progression. Evil mongrels

    4
    3
  3. The legacy of percived corruption and political violence, PF cader violence and intimidation will judge lungu harshly…….. .

    This is what lungu will be remembered for…

  4. The legacy of percived corruption and political violence, PF cader violence and intimidation will judge lungu harshly…….. .

    This is what lungu will be remembered for…

  5. Spaka what has that got to do with the article? You hate so much that you even fail to coordinate your hating.

    4
    2
  6. Even over Virtual Summit president Lungu can not read personally his attendance speech, read on his behalf by Christopher Yaluma. What does our president do if he can hardly be seen to directly be involved as other heads of state are demonstrating.

  7. KZ, I have just finished attending our virtual church meeting, quite uplifting message and interactions afterwards with fellow members.

  8. # 5 Kaizar Zulu

    No matter what lungu talks about , Even if he is talking about bannishing child marrage……..all people see is the percived corruption, political violence, PF cader brutality against citizens….

    Nothing he says or does will change this image…..

    Sorry badala….

    6
    2
  9. At least this utterly la7y sausage has not boarded the GRZ Gulfstream Jet….he can read as many speeches as possible virtually so long as the bum is in State House not wasting resources.

    3
    1
  10. Ichikonko mwikateni uyo!! Diaspora mulimbe. Another five years in opposition in the cold Diaspora awaits you.

    2
    2
  11. Edgar appreciates the positive impact of globalization while being mindful of the vices it introduces. I think we are in safe hands except for the economy. We need to be more productive that’s all. Too many lazy zambians after a quick buck, learn to work for your money.

Comments are closed.

Read more

Local News

Discover more from Lusaka Times-Zambia's Leading Online News Site - LusakaTimes.com

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue Reading