African countries urged to enhance productive capacity, take advantage of developed markets

Alan Kyeremateng

African countries have been called upon to enhance their productive capacities so they can take advantage of market opportunities in the developed world.

Mr. Alan Kyerematen, Director of the African Trade Policy Centre (ATPC) of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) made the call in an exclusive interview with

Mr. Kyerematen gave the interview at the end of the Second Africa Trade Forum (ATF II) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in September 2012.

“Developed countries have open markets in developing countries and we can also take advantage of their markets,” he said.

He said Africa must enhance its productive capacity to take advantage of market opportunities in the developed world.

“If we succeed in the developing world, we would be building a middle class, a viable middle class. The kind of market that the developed world need to be able to as it were prosper,” he said.

The ATF II concluded on the main note of establishing a Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) to enhance intra-African trade, which is currently said to be around 11%.

Speaking earlier at the conference, Dr. Stephen Karingi, the Director, Regional Integration, Infrastructure of the ECA said studies conducted by the UN agency has found that on removing existing trade barriers and tariffs, formal intra-African trade would increase from 11% to around 22%.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi, back from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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