- The summit will witness the launch of the African Continental Free Trade Area
ADDIS ABEBA – Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew headed to Niger, Niamey, on Wednesday to attend the 12th extraordinary summit of the African Union.
The AU heads of states and Governments will hold their meeting starting from Thursday to Monday, according to the Office of the Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
During the meeting, the leaders will launch the historic African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFT) after completing the number of the required endorsements – 22 endorsements.
Niger, who is hosting the AU Summit for the first time, will be the latest country to join AfCFTA during the summit in Niamey.
Nigeria, the largest economy on the continent, was one of the last countries that had not committed to signing the deal and its decision to join the bloc will significantly bolster its clout.
The free trade agreement aims to eliminate tariffs between member states, creating a market of 1.2 billion people with a combined GDP of more than 2.2 trillion USD. Apart from Nigeria, only Eritrea and Benin have chosen not to join the zone.