The Minister of Industry Trade and investment, Otunba Adebayo Adeniyi has assured that the country will benefit from African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA’s) $3.4 trillion economic bloc as it takes off in January 2021.
In a statement by the Special Assistant to the minister, Ifedayo Sayo, the country must play a leading role as AfCFTA Offers New Opportunities For Nigeria’s Industrial Growth.
According to the Minister, industrialists should take advantage of these opportunities to promote Made-in-Nigeria goods. Nigeria cannot afford to be left out of the emerging African economic bloc.
He added that AfCFTA, the world’s largest free trade area in terms of 54 participating countries, would start on January 1, 2021.
This date would signal the beginning of the implementation of a single continental market for goods and services, with free movement of business persons and investments across Africa.
Adebayo pointed that the journey started on July 7, 2019 when Nigeria became the 53rd African country to sign the AfCFTA treaty. Long before then, it had always been the dream of Nigeria and Africa’s founding fathers to unite the continent in one, shared prosperity.
The country has worked tirelessly to ensure that Nigeria not only partake as a signatory in name, but becomes a major trade and economic power house, even more than it has been within the ECOWAS sub-region.
Also speaking on readiness measures taken by government towards the effective implementation of AfCFTA, the Secretary, National Action Committee on AfCFTA, Francis Anatogu said, “We are effectively coordinating with all critical stakeholders to ensure a smooth playing field for Nigerian traders and business men to explore the vast markets that will be opened up come January 1st 2021.
“We are set to commence a major communication campaign and have tagged January 2021 as AfCFTA Awareness and Sensitization month, which will take place across the six geopolitical zones, and will involve various stakeholder groups in public, private and civil society sectors, as well as other critical traditional institutions.”