African trade boost

The Star Early Edition - - WORLD -

NAIROBI: African states are ex­pected to meet the Oc­to­ber dead­line to es­tab­lish the con­ti­nent’s largest trad­ing bloc by the end of this year.

Com­mon Mar­ket for East­ern and South­ern Africa (Comesa) sec­re­tary-gen­eral Sindiso Ng­wenya said 21 out of 26 coun­tries have so far signed an agree­ment to merge three re­gional blocs.

“The for­ma­tion of the Tri­par­tite Free Trade Area by com­bin­ing the East African Com­mu­nity, the SADC and Comesa is go­ing on as planned,” said Ng­wenya. The five coun­tries yet to rat­ify the agree­ment have made progress to­wards do­mes­ti­cat­ing the deal.

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