FITA Forum 2018: continental momentum recommended to boost inter-African trade | Tunisia News Gazette

FITA Forum 2018: continental momentum recommended to boost inter-African trade

Africa is still the continent with the lowest intra-community exchange rate, according to speakers at a conference held Tuesday in Tunis, on the sidelines of the first forum Financing Investment & Trade in Africa (FITA 2018) held from February 5 to 7 in Tunisia.

“The volume of intra-African trade represents 15% of the global volume of international trade against 63% for Europe, 52% for America and 50% for Asia, said Moustapha Sow, CEO of SF Capital (Investment Bank) in Senegal “.

He said the African continent of Africa, which faces considerable challenges, is also the most divided continent in terms of economic integration.

Sow, therefore, argued for convergences between the various regions of the same continent and call on the public sector to work closely with the financial institutions operating on the African continent to promote the volume of trade and guarantee a better African integration.

“The amount of capital displaced outside Africa is $ 50 million, an amount that could meet the financing needs of infrastructure in this continent,” he pointed out, calling on public authorities to put in place rigorous policies to fight corruption and maintain the wealth of Africa”.

Director General of the African Bank Development Bank (AfDB) Mohamed El Azizi, who spoke at this debate, talked about the obstacles to financing projects in the African continent.

“Studies have shown that project financing needs in Africa are estimated at $ 120 billion, with interest rates above 10 percent in 1/3 of Africa’s countries with very demanding guarantees,” he said, citing disparities in integration rates within the same continent (the lowest integration rate is found in North Africa, where trade between countries barely reaches 5% versus 7% in East Africa).

The volume of intra-African trade, which remains very low compared to the potential of the continent, must be increased through the establishment of a legal and institutional framework to ensure a real continental dynamic, said the Minister of Investment, Development and International Cooperation, Zied LaAdhari.

“Africans, themselves, must believe in the development potential of Africa,” the minister said, calling for the promotion of the African continent through a “continental marketing” approach and to develop the African infrastructure and interconnection.

Speakers were unanimous in emphasizing that guaranteeing greater access to the African market requires the acceleration of administrative reforms in terms of exchange rate regulation, the launching of support structures for start-up companies for access projects and additional efforts to increase the awareness of businessmen about the financing programmes of banking institutions.

Source: TAP news Agency

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