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The Status of Regional Integration in Africa Advancing Intra-African Trade for Post-Covid Recovery
Economic Affairs Department (EAD)
African Union Commission Department of Economic Affairs
Addis Ababa
Western Africa
African Union Commission
ill, 116p.

Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson, African Union Commission African leaders have, since the early years of independence, recognized the importance of creating a single African economic community which has been one of the most enduring priorities of many African leaders as well as a rallying call for Africans. It is in this vein that AU Agenda 2063, which absorbs the Abuja Treaty, is designed to be implemented within the framework of integration while enhancing and accelerating African integration efforts as evidenced by the Continental Flagship Projects. What is the status of the regional integration process in Africa today? What are the key achievements of the various RECs? What are the lessons learned to better foster regional integration? To respond to various questions associated with regional integration, the African Ministers in charge of integration recommended that the African Union develops monitoring and evaluation frameworks. The African Multidimensional Regional Integration Index (AMRII) was subsequently developed by the AUC in collaboration with the RECs to measure progress and assess the level of integration. This edition, on the Status of Regional Integration in Africa for the year 2020, draws on the AMRII and the exclusive information provided by RECs to reflect the latest achievements on the ground. One of the important messages emerging from the Report is that while the pace of regional integration has been generally slow in some RECs, significant progress has been made in various thematic areas such as the free movement of persons, customs unions, tariff and non-tariff barriers, transport corridors, and regional infrastructure. It is indeed encouraging that the Report shows that it is possible to foster regional integration for the socio-economic transformation of the Continent, with a good number of RECs providing practical success stories based on strategies and initiatives that can easily be adopted by other RECs. This report comes at a challenging time for the Africa. The effects of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) are felt across the Continent. The pandemic has impacted every African country negatively and, unfortunately for regional integration, the response has been to close borders in order to protect populations from external danger and to look internally. Regional integration has ecome a victim of these actions by governments, but it could also be the solution. How can we bring regional integration back or make it relevant in addressing the post-COVID-19 recovery from the health, social and economic shock? Regional integration is still important for African development and it will aid in the Continent’s post COVID-19 revival. There is urgency now to use the opportunity inherent in the post-COVID-19 revival to build an Africa that trades with itself for shared prosperity …


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