Development Potential abounds in AFCFTA when fully harnessed – Wamkele Mene

Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, AFCFTA Wamkele Mene says the Diaspora has positive development potential, that when fully harnessed will help mitigate the developmental challenges of Africa especially Ghana.

Mr. Mene said trade engagement must be enhanced by not only confronting the challenges of COVID-19 but also pursue the National economic development and AU agenda 2063 as well as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Speaking at the First Diaspora Summit 2021, Mr. Mene noted that the agreement also paves the way for the Diaspora to invest and rope in revenue to develop their country. He urged the Ghanaian Diasporan community to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the AFCFTA by utilizing the trade and investment engagements within the country.

He intimated that “over the years links between the African Diaspora and Africa have grown, especially since the recognition by the African Union of the African diaspora is the sixth Region of Africa in 2003 complete with an administrative unit at the AU headquarters.

In addition, contributing to these positive developments in the adoption in May 2012 the declaration that paved the way for the development and implementation of the AU diaspora program and the diaspora engagement Project is an initiative of this program.

However, there are still potentials to enhance the engagements between Africa and the diaspora not just and dealing with challenges such as COVID-19 but also in the Pursuit of National economic development objectives and the AU’s agenda 2063″ the Africa we want” as well as objectives of the African continental free trade area the boost intra-African trade and to reduce barriers into intra-African investment.

Minister of Finance Ken Ofori-Atta said Government is working with stakeholders to facilitate interventions for the Diasporan communities.

“For the diasporan, what we are doing is that we are having a various compact from various Ministries for specific interventions that will help accelerate that. So, the compact with GIPC is ongoing and that will also come out with the value that we will give them to promote these things. So we are looking forward to that but as I mentioned the issue of Diasporans coming in is both a responsibility but has enormous economic benefits.” Mr. Ofori-Atta noted.

Story By: Mabel Adorkor Annang

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