Fin24

Zuma launches free trade bloc

2011-06-12 14:17

Johannesburg  - President Jacob Zuma on Sunday launched Africa's biggest free trade bloc aimed at enhancing cooperation between 26 nations to boost economies in the world's poorest and underdeveloped continent.

"There is no single country that can prosper on its own," Zuma said at the launch of the initiative that will see three sometimes overlapping trade blocs join to create a $875bn market.

"The free trade area will certainly help us accelerate regional integration efforts aimed at ensuring that African countries trade with each other on better terms," he told African leaders attending the launch.

The Southern African Development Community (SADC), East African Community (EAC) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) will now work as a joint bloc.

The agreement will include about half the continent's nations but economic disparities and political instability in countries like Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Libya and Sudan are possible hurdles towards improved trade.

Inefficient bureaucracies, poor infrastructure, tariff barriers and weak supply chains are further challenges.

 

Comments
  • Anton - 2011-06-12 15:19

    That's great Mr President. It is such a shame that so often , your Africa policies are so out of touch with reality, and you continuously seem to prop up African dictators and tyrants. For besides that, you work very very hard, and no doubt in my mind, you are a great President, and we are very fortunate to have you.

  • Judith - 2011-06-12 15:49

    Well placed between two people who are set on destroying their countries, he doesn't look good, only Bob was missing in the photo. Given the problems going through borders, will free trade work? I have strong doubts as too many government people stand to lose in this

  • Judith - 2011-06-12 16:15

    Well placed between two people who are set on destroying their countries, he doesn't look good, only Bob was missing in the photo. Given the problems going through borders, will free trade work? I have strong doubts as too many government people stand to lose in this

  • mordekai.shumba - 2011-06-12 16:31

    A trip in the right direction. Hope it will be travelled with sincerity by all concerned

  • Eddie Thomas - 2011-06-13 22:18

    Ja sure Zzzzzzuma...... You can't even get it right in your own country which is riddled with lazy and power obsessed "civil servants" in government departments messing up regulatory services and subsequent potential revenue earning import and export. The Department of Agriculture and customs officials is the worst. Perhaps you should start by explaining the meaning of civil servant to your own staff. Good luck.

  • pages:
  • 1