Tanzania ratified the agreement establishing the African continental free trade area (AfCFTA) on Thursday, effectively joining a pact linking countries with a gross domestic product totaling 3.4 trillion US dollars.
Minister of Industry and Trade, Kitila Mkumbo, announced the announcement via Twitter, noting that the country has entered a market with 1.2 billion customers.
We are happy to announce this. Today, September 9th, 2021, the Parliament of the United Republic of Tanzania RATIVATED the Agreement on the Establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) , 2 billion market and the African economy of 3.4 trillion US dollars!
– Kitila Mkumbo (PhD) (@kitilam) September 9, 2021
AfCTA was first launched in April Opened for signature in 2018, but entered Kr aft after it was ratified by at least 21 of the 55 member states.
Tanzania had not officially acceded, although former President John Magu fuli signed the agreement in 2019.
After signing Parliament’s approval is required for ratification of the agreement.
Ratification is an indicator of President Suluhu’s intention to integrate the country into regional integration.
Ratification hardly takes place twice Months after AfCFTA General Secretary Wamkele Mene held talks with President Samia Suluhu Hasan.
Mr. Mene asked for an assurance of Tanzania’s commitment to the agreement, which President Samia promised to join “very soon”.
In East Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi have already ratified the agreement.
The agreement, which was signed by 54 of the 55 member states of the African Union ( AU), obliges the countries to 90 percent necessary tariff reductions within five years.
Eritrea is the only country that has still joined the AfCFTA.
Of the 54 countries that have signed the agreement, only 38 countries have including Tanzania, ratified the treaty.
AfCFTA offers a unified market of 1.2 billion people with a combined GDP of $ 3 trillion and is potentially a strong foundation for industrialization.
Currently, intra-African exports account for around 17 percent of total continental exports. An increase in this proportion should increase added value, create jobs and increase incomes.