Intra-Africa trade and investment gets a boost

A $1 billion injection to finance programmes will expand trade between SA and the rest of Africa.

The Export Credit Insurance Corporation (ECIC) of SA and African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) have signed a deal announcing the first Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF), to be held in Cairo, Egypt, from 11 to 17 December this year. 

The trade deal came about after 44 of Africa’s 54 countries signed the landmark Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) earlier this year. The deal aims to increase trade among African countries, which currently stands at less than 20 percent.

The CFTA will create one of the largest free trade market zones in the world. Benedict Oramah, president of Afreximbank, says the bank and the ECIC will work together to boost intra-African trade, co-financing and risk-sharing opportunities, as well as sharing knowledge. He has said:

“The joint initiative will support businesses through capacity building and market-information initiatives, and will help small and medium-sized entrepreneurs to join regional supply chains. It will also provide advisory services and guarantees to South African investors seeking trade and investment opportunities in Afreximbank African member countries.”