AfCFTA: Inequality in exchange rate costing Africa’s economy $5bn yearly

Promoters of Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) has said that the abnormalities being experienced in the foreign exchange rate conversion in the continent is costing multilateral trade in the continent an estimated $5 billion yearly and is also playing a major setback in the continent’s GDP growth. Precisely, the management of AfCFTA said that is the reason why the launching of the Pan-African Payments and Settlements System (PAPSS) of the Afriexim Bank debuted last week to assist the continent to save the $5 billion annually loss from the accruals and conversions to dollars in exchange rate.

AfCFTA Secretary- General, Mr Wamkele Mene, made this known at a webinar on Africa trade in Cairo, the Egyptian capital, yesterday. Mene explained that the continent faced the challenge of carrying shipping containerized cargoes freely on the African continent.

He therefore added that the continent has about 42 carriage ability corridors which currently posed challenges on ease of trade, ease of access to new markets for traders, manufacturers, importers and exporters. In addition, the Af- CFTA scribe also added that the inequality in exchange rate system which cost the continent about $5 billion yearly can be seen in terms of lack of competitiveness in trade, in terms of lack of affordability of trade, in terms of lack of access to trade. He, however, pointed out that Afriexim’s payment settlement system has the potential to be a game changer particularly for MSMEs, young entrepreneur from enterprise that wants to access any market at the cost of carrying out trade business in the continent that has been a barrier for decades.




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