Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Dr Sibusiso Moyo says operationalisation of African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) will help grow the country’s economy.
Dr Moyo said this last Friday, in a speech read on his behalf by Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Amon Murwira, during African diplomats’ celebration of Africa Day.
AfCFTA was established on March 21 last year by African Heads of State and Zimbabwe has since sent its instrument ratifying the agreement to the African Union.
Said Dr Moyo: “Zimbabwe looks forward to the operationalisation of African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement now that the required 22 ratifications have been attained — including that of Zimbabwe.
“Our Instrument of Ratification is currently in the corridors of the AU Headquarters, ready for lodging with the AU chairperson (Rwandan President Paul Kagame).”
Dr Moyo said Zimbabwe is hopeful that soon after the Niamey Summit in July 2019, the continent will witness a “speedy conclusion” of all requisite modalities to promote steady progress towards unfettered and eventually free trade among all participating member states.
Secretary for Industry and Commerce Dr Mavis Sibanda told The Herald last Friday that the AfCFTA will expand Zimbabwe’s markets.
“We are seeing that the doors are opening for our products. We should look at it (AfCFTA) in a positive manner; looking at it in the sense that African goods are going to come into Zimbabwe and Zimbabwean goods are also going into Africa.
Dr Sibanda said AfCFTA will help “open doors” for local products to dominate other African countries.