All 55 African countries agreed to establish free trade zone. This mean potential growth and prosperity for citizens.
African Union launched in 2002 as pan-African organization consisting 55 member states. Members: Algeria, Angola, Benin,Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, CAR, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic republic of Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Egypt, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sahrawi, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Eswatini, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
African Union Member States are divided into five geographic regions:
- Central Africa.
- Eastern Africa.
- Northern Africa.
- Southern Africa.
- Western Africa.
The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is the world’s largest free trade zone. Expected that by 2022 intra-African trade will grow for at least 60%.
Countries which participated in free trade zone will experience tariffs cut and quotas. In Africa located 55 countries and almost all of them use different currency which over complicate trade. In order to simplify, 15 West African countries agreed to adapt new currency (named “eco”) from the next year.
African Union will create massive opportunities because it will be $3.4 trillion economic bloc with 1.3 billion people.
But not everything that optimistic: massive corruption, military conflicts, terrorism, religious conflicts, almost no infrastructure, Sahara desert, low education level, lack of drinking water & fresh food, epidemics & healthcare non-existence, human rights violation, colonial mentality, etc. To overcome this problems will be easier in African Union.
African continent is rich for natural resources. Continent’s natural resources extracted without passing profit into budget. That mean that Africa is the rich content where live poor people.
Over last 10 years Sahara desert drastically grown in size. Every year more and more land turning into desert which push local people to relocate.
Water scarcity is another huge problem.
Continent’s infrastructure developed only in some regions and mostly require investments for repair. Main foreign investor is China. China’s railway projects in Africa:Kenya (Mombasa – Nairobi railway), Ethiopia (two projects), Angola, Djibouti, Nigeria. African Union headquarter in Addis Ababa 100% funded by China. West African regional bloc headquarter in Abuja build by China. China also invested in many hydropower projects across continent. Congo’s special economic zone is direct investment by China. Zimbabwe’s new parliament building also funded by China. As we can see China heavily invested in African continent with believe that it will give good ROI (return on investment).
After a few centuries of almost no economic growth, it’s time for Africa to became superpower.
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