UNIDO Organises Forum on Implementation of AfCFTA

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By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Recently, some African countries agreed to be part of African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), but Nigeria, the continent’s largest economy, declined, raising some issues concerning the initiative meant to make Africa economically viable.

As world leaders prepare for the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York this week, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is organising an event on the sidelines of the 73rd UNGA to address AfCFTA.

A statement issued by the organisation said to further foster the implementation of the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa (IDDA III), the high-level event will focus on ‘Enhancing global partnerships for IDDA III – Key for successful implementation of AfCFTA,’ the theme of this event.

UNIDO is putting this programme together with the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB), the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

UNIDO Director General, Mr LI Yong, will introduce the event, followed by a key message of the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, Ms Amina J. Mohammed, and remarks by the President of Rwanda, Mr Paul Kagame, in his capacity as the current AUC Chairperson.

Interactive discussions will be held around two themes: “Ushering in a new era of intra-African trade: Challenges and opportunities for African industrial growth” and “Strengthening the involvement of the international community in African industrialization following the launch of the AfCFTA”.

The interventions will focus on how inclusive and sustainable industrial development and the IDDA III initiative can support the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area through enhanced competitiveness at the industry and enterprise level, while providing a platform to reflect on innovative ways of leveraging global partnerships and mobilizing financial and non-financial resources for trade capacity building in Africa.

The high-level event is expected to bring together more than 100 high-level stakeholders, including Heads of States and high-level government representatives, representatives of the Regional Economic Communities (RECs), development financing institutions, UN agencies, bilateral partners, private sector, NGOs and academia, UNIDO said in a statement made available to Business Post.

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