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2019, április 22 - 19:00

Seychelles signs agreement for free trade exchanges

Seychelles stands to benefit greatly after having been one of the 44 African Union member countries to have recently signed an agreement establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTA).

Ten (10) of the 55 member states including Nigeria and South Africa have yet to sign the agreement.

Vice-President Vincent Meriton made this pronouncement yesterday during a press conference following his delegation’s mission to Kigali, Rwanda for the 10th Extraordinary Summit of the AU where the document was signed.

The summit took place on March 21 and has been described as an “historic moment” for the African continent.

The AfCTA agreement is a pact that will allow for the establishment of a free trade area between signatories and, if successful, is purported to become the biggest trade agreement since the formation of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

It is expected to boost Pan-African trade by reducing trade barriers such as duties and has the potential to bring together over 1 billion people into the same market of an estimated total GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of more than 3.4 trillion US dollars.

Vice-President Meriton met local media houses yesterday to provide details of the agreement and how AfCTA will benefit Seychelles.

“This agreement will provide Seychelles with a market of more than 1 billion people. This gives us ample opportunities to sell our products and services with fewer barriers,” VP Meriton said.

For instance, VP Meriton continued, the AfCTA will enable Seychelles to reach the emerging middle-class demographic in Africa with our value-added tuna, which are considered to be of great quality.