The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat has secured $11.24 million grant from the African Development Bank to accelerate African intra-trade.
AfDB says the Secretariat, currently in phase II of its implementation phase, will use the financing to boost sustainable intra-Africa trade and to augment the number of participating African member states.
Under the Institutional Support Grant approved in July by the AfDB Board of Directors, the funds will support institutional strengthening of the AfCFTA Secretariat, aid collaboration with the private sector to implement the AfCFTA, and support of climate-resilient regional and continental value chains to boost intra-Africa trade.
As of June this year, 54 African countries had signed the AfCFTA agreement with 42 member states having ratified the agreement. If fully implemented, the agreement could boost the continent’s income by as much as 9%, to $571 billion.
Increase in the African intra-trade is further expected to alleviate at least 30 million Africans from extreme poverty and add $450 billion in income by 2035.