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Africa and Gulf States Forge New Economic Partnership

Over the past decade, trade relations between the UAE and sub-Saharan Africa have surged by over 30%, while Saudi Arabia's trade with the region has skyrocketed to 12 times its previous value. The Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is poised to further propel this growth by granting Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) firms entry into a unified African market.

Launched officially in 2021, AfCFTA forecasts a single market encompassing 1.7 billion people and $6.7 trillion in consumer and business spending by 2030. This preferential trade pact will amplify international exports and intra-African trade, fostering vast opportunities for local and global enterprises to penetrate and expand across the continent.

In May 2022, the World Economic Forum initiated the Forum Friends of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area to bolster the AfCFTA's implementation through public-private collaboration. GCC companies have actively participated, exemplified by DP World's $80 million investment in a mega logistics park in Egypt and Agility's efforts to stimulate foreign direct investment (FDI) and multinational engagement in Africa.

As the Forum embarks on a partnership with Saudi Arabia to fortify trade and investment endeavors in Africa, the Africa-GCC alliance anticipates strengthening amidst global economic shifts, underlining increased investments, trade, and collaborative ventures, crucial for bolstering economic resilience and growth.

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Posted on :5/10/2024