Continental Free Trade Area Will Address Africa's Refugee Problem - AU Parliament


Continental Free Trade Area Will Address Africa's Refugee Problem - AU Parliament

ADDIS ABABA (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 10th February, 2019) The ratification of the African Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA), which 44 out of 55 African Union (AU) member states have signed, by additional African states will tackle the problem of African youth migrating to Europe, Stephen Masele, the first vice president of the AU Pan-African Parliament and a member of parliament in Tanzania, told Sputnik on Sunday.

"We are proposing to create a good environment for job creation in Africa, which will attract young people to stay on the continent instead of going to Europe or going elsewhere. So CFTA is one of the strategies. If we manage to sign and ratify the CFTA, it will help to create more jobs for African youth, and then they will not be attracted to go to Europe," Masele said on the sidelines of the 32nd AU Summit, which is currently underway in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa.

Masele praised the choice of the theme of this year's edition of the summit Migration and Displacement in Africa claiming that Africa was the "victim of migrants."

"This year's theme is very important because we want to bring back our youth. We need to bring back our workforce for the development of Africa," Masele said.

He called on those countries who had not signed the CFTA yet to do so promptly.

"If we want to really compete at some level with other developed countries, I think the CFTA is very important for Africa," Masele added.

He went on to say that African countries were currently working to harmonize the CFTA with their domestic laws.

The CFTA was signed in late March 2018 at a summit in the Rwandan city of Kigali. The accord seeks to progressively eliminate tariffs on intra-African trade and to remove other trade barriers.

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