Here’s a quick recap and what you should know:
On 21 March 2018, 44 of the 55 African Union member states gathered in Kigali, Rwanda, signed the AfCFTA with a view to creating a single market in the continent. Once the agreement is ratified by all signatories, the trade bloc will encompass 1.3 billion people and over US$3T in combined gross domestic product (GDP).
Countries agreed to remove tariffs on 90 per cent of goods and to liberalize services. Free movement of people and a single currency could be future developments.
The signing of the agreement concluded the first phase of negotiations; countries will focus on the AfCFTA investment provisions in phase 2.
Today, 54 of the 55 African Union Member States have signed on. Thirty-six countries have deposited their instruments of ratification, confirming them as State Parties to the agreement. As with many trade agreements, signing then ratification is a prerequisite to enjoying any benefits.
Video AfCFTA 2018: