President Ramaphosa to attend African Union Summit in Niger

South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa will participate in the 12th Extraordinary Summit of the African Union (AU) in Niamey, Republic of Niger, this Sunday 7th July 2019, according to a Tweet shared by the Presidency of South Africa.

The Summit will mark the entry into force of the Agreement on the Establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and will formally launch the operational phase of the African Internal Market.

Since its adoption, the AfCFTA has been signed by 52 countries, with 24 ratifications, thus ensuring its entry into force after it surpassed the threshold of 22 ratifications by AU Member States. The Summit will also decide on the location and structure of the AfCFTA Secretariat.

At the Open Session of the Extraordinary Summit, President Ramaphosa will, alongside President Paul Kagame of the Republic of Rwanda, participate in the launch of the Tariff Concession Portal.

The Extraordinary Summit will be preceded by the 35th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council on 04 and 05 July 2019 and the AfCFTA Business Forum on 06 July 2019.

The AfCFTA aims to make doing business on the continent easier and encourages African countries to trade among each other while addressing issues that stifle intra-African trade such as high transport costs, cumbersome customs, among others.