Uganda joins as Uhuru flies to Kigali to sign trade deal

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Kenyatta seen off at the airport by deputy president William Ruto

President Uhuru Kenyatta this morning travelled to Kigali, Rwanda, where he will join other African leaders in the signing of an agreement that will create a continental free trade area.

The Heads of State and Government will gather in Rwanda to sign the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) which is expected to increase intra-Africa trade above its current low level.

The trade pact is expected to spur economic growth, industrialisation, improved infrastructure development and business diversification.

The trade agreement also deals with non-tariff barriers, technical obstacles to trade and customs procedures.

The agreement also creates a framework to deal with transit issues between countries.

Deputy President William Ruto was at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport to see off the Head of State.

The plane carrying the President departed from the airport shortly before 8.00 a.m.

Uganda to sign the deal too

Addressing press on Tuesday, Frank K. Tumwebaze, the Minister of ICT and National Guidance, said cabinet had noted the agreement establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

The key objectives of the agreement are to: report on the progress of the negotiations for the establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

“Note that the legal instruments have been developed for the establishment of the AfCFTA.”

The report that the legal instruments will be considered and signed by the Heads of State and Government during their Extra-Ordinary Meeting scheduled for 21st March 2018.

Cabinet directed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and that of East African Community Affairs to examine the provisions within the African Continental Free Trade Area.

It also constituted a Cabinet Committee which would discuss how to improve Uganda’s competitiveness in the Regional Economic Community and African Continental Free Trade Area.

 

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