The South African cabinet has approved the Tripartite Free Trade Area (TFTA) agreement that establishes the common market for Eastern and Southern Africa, East African Community and Southern African Development Community, a cabinet spokesperson said on Thursday. Source: Xinhua





Now the agreement is going to Parliament for ratification, Phumla Williams said after a cabinet meeting in Cape Town.


The TFTA is a key Africa-led project that marks a decisive step to overcome the continent's colonial heritage of small fragmented markets, Williams said.
This will be achieved by promoting intra-African investments and attracting more foreign investment into the free trade area, she said.
As a result of regional integration efforts and stable economies, there has been strong growth in intra-African investments, said Williams.
The TFTA will boost intra-Africa trade in accordance with the aspirations of the AU's Agenda 2063
As part of Africa's integration approach, the envisaged AFTA is designed to combine market integration with industrial and infrastructure development to address Africa's productive capacity and supply side constraints, promote the diversification of Africa's export base from dependence on raw materials to value-added products, as well as alleviate the chronic infrastructure deficit in the continent.
Besides offering an opportunity to create larger economies of scale, a bigger market and improve the prospects of the African continent to attract investment, the TFTA will provide new export opportunities for South African products and services in West Africa and North Africa.
The South African government has repeatedly stated that it is committed to a coordinated strategy to boost intra-Africa trade and to build an integrated market in Africa that will see a market of over 1 billion people with a GDP of approximately 2.6 trillion U.S. dollars.