AfCFTA: Nigeria not in hurry – Adeosun

The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun yesterday said the federal government would thoroughly examine the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) before signing it.
Adeosun, who said this at the 2018 Annual Meetings of the Afreximbank yesterday in Abuja, said the trade agreement was too important for the country to sign without making sure that the interest of its people was protected.
49 African countries have signed the agreement, leaving Nigeria and others.
The minister revealed that the government had almost concluded a nationwide consultation with stakeholders before deciding whether to sign the agreement or not.
“We have been doing a lot of consultations around the country with manufacturers and other stakeholders.
“People are asking legitimate questions about how the AfCFTA affects them.
“We must get things right and that is why we must follow due process so that we can say that we have done all the things that we are expected to do.
“So that is simply what has been happening in the last few months,” she said.
The AfCFTA is expected to cover 1.2 billon Africans with Gross Domestic Product of 2.5 trillion dollars, and in 2050 it would cover four billion Africans, constituting 36 per cent of the global population.
The agreement is expected to increase intra-African trade from the current 16 per cent to 53 per cent with a corresponding GDP growth and increase employment and job creation on the continent.

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