General

Adebayo, Zainab Ahmed to head AfCFTA implementation committee

Author:
Oluseyi Awojulugbe

Adeniyi Adebayo, the minister of industry, trade and investment, has inaugurated the national action committee for the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA).

The committee, which was inaugurated on Friday, will be co-chaired by Adebayo and Zainab Ahmed, the minister of finance, budget and national planning.

The mandate of the committee includes the conclusion of a common undifferentiated ECOWAS schedule of concessions for trade in goods and trade in services for AFCFTA and common external tariff (CET) negotiations; championing programmes to resolve the critical continental level challenges such as smuggling and abuse of rules of origin, production capacity constraints as well as border and trade rules enforcement.

It would also partake in concluding ongoing trade reforms programmes at ECOWAS including adoption of common trade policy, the establishment of an ECOWAS trade policy committee, resolving issues in the ECOWAS trade liberalization scheme (ETLS); establishment of an ECOWAS Members peer review and audit mechanism, and amending article nine on ECOWAS protocol on decision making.

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The committee will also be required to coordinate the relevant ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to implement the trade readiness interventions detailed in the AFCFTA impact and readiness assessment report.

  • The minister of industry, trade and investment (chairman)
  • Minister of finance, budget and national planning (alternate chairman);
  • Senior special assistant to the president on public sector matters, the office of the chief of staff (secretary);
  • Director-general, Budget Office of the Federation;
  • Permanent secretary, ministry of industry, trade and investment;
  • Director-general, Nigerian Office for Trade Negotiations;
  • Senior special assistant to the president on development policy; office of the chief of staff;
  • Director, technical services, ministry of finance;
  • Director-level representatives of the ministries of foreign affairs, industry, trade and investment, transportation, aviation, agriculture and rural development, petroleum resources, mines and steel development, power, communications and digital economy, works and housing and information and the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
  • Others are director and comptroller level representatives of Nigeria Customs Service, Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigerian Export Promotion Council, Nigerian Investment Promotion
    Commission, Central Bank of Nigeria, Standards Organization of Nigeria, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency, Nigeria Ports Authority, Nigerian Institute for Advanced Legal Studies;
  • Stakeholder members include National Executive level representatives of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, National Association of Chambers of Commerce Industry Mines and
    Agriculture (NACCIMA), Nigeria Labour Congress, National Association of Small and Medium Enterprises, Nigeria Economic Summit Group, All Farmers Association of Nigeria, Federated Association of Agricultural Commodities Associations of Nigeria and National Association of Nigerian Traders;
  • Also included in the committee are representatives of the technology/digital economy associations, financial services, health, education and creative services sectors.

The AfCFTA seeks to create a single market for goods and services and movement of persons to spur economic growth, enhance welfare, create jobs, and deepen integration amongst African countries.

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