The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) should result in intra-Africa exports reaching $1 trillion by 2035, according to a report released by Standard Chartered Bank Group.
In a report titled ‘Future of Trade 2023’, the global banking group said AfCFTA had emerged as a critical imperative to drive intra-Africa trade and accelerate sustainable economic development within the region.
Explaining the place of AfCFTA in Africa's economy, Sunil Kaushal, chief executive officer, Africa & Middle East, Standard Chartered, stated in the report: “The global pandemic demonstrated the acute need for Africa to build a robust economic and social model that can withstand substantial external shocks without derailing the significant progress that has been made over the past three decades.
“During the pandemic, treasuries ran low on foreign reserves, many African markets struggled to obtain vaccines, key industries and supply chains were disrupted, and raising capital became extremely difficult and costly. AfCFTA forms part of the solution.
“The AfCFTA has now been ratified by the majority of African states and, once fully implemented, will enable, and drive intra-Africa trade and accelerate sustainable economic development.”