The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission announces the Trade Promotion Organization (TPO) network to promote and increase trade in the region and maximize the opportunities offered by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Did.
Oluswgun Awolowo, the first president of the TPO network and secretary-general of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, lamented the current volume of trade between the region and its member states. AfCFTA It began.
He also blamed the low utilization of ECOWAS trade liberalization schemes aimed at increasing trade, especially among micro and small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), which account for large-scale economic activity in the region.
Awolowo mentioned this at the launch of the TPO in Abuja on Thursday and at the network’s first annual meeting.
Awolowo revealed that while exports within Africa account for only about 16% of Africa’s world trade, ECOWAS intra-trade accounts for only one-tenth of the world trade of member countries.
He also said that ETLS is underutilized due to lack of information on existence, registration, donations, enforcement, costs, and entry strategies.
“Sure, we need to do more to increase trade volume within the ECOWAS region and between ECOWAS and other parts of Africa.
The president said that the best way to promote trade between countries is through cooperation between the respective trade promotion agencies of each country.
Awolowo emphasized that African countries need to take advantage of the opportunities presented by AfCFTA, which combines 1.3 billion markets with $ 3 trillion in GDP.
This offers a unique opportunity for MSMEs to take advantage of, as visas predict that e-commerce in sub-Saharan Africa will reach $ 7 trillion by 2024.
The President has ensured that the TPO Network is committed to promoting the ease of trade in MSMEs throughout the ECOWAS region and Africa, thereby building an army of exporters to support intra-African trade.
“If properly operated, this new mechanism of the TPO network should be of great help in facilitating trade between ECOWAS member states, resulting in further economic integration of subregions.” ..
Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, Chairman of the ECOWAS Commission, said that in collaboration with the ECOWAS Commission, TPO will contribute to the international recognition, reputation, credibility and branding of the region.
The president, who launched the TPO, said the network could also consult with relevant stakeholders to provide advice on regional policymaking.
The president said the Commission’s initiative, TPO, could not come at a better time as the continent started trading under the AfCFTA.
He congratulated President Awolowo, who was elected the first president of the network.
The decision to establish the WTO was made after the 86th Ordinary Meeting of the ECOWAS Ministerial Conference on June 17, 2021.
ECOWAS announces trade promotion network to relocate AfCFTA states
https://businessday.ng/news/article/ecowas-unveils-trade-promotion-network-to-reposition-states-for-afcfta/ ECOWAS announces trade promotion network to relocate AfCFTA states