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  • ***Stakeholders in the Lagos Forum for South-West Geopolitical Zone Sensitization and Consultation, support Nigeria’s membership of the AfCFTA, at the same time, welcoming the urgency for radical improvements in economic infrastructure, trade financing and the establishment of AfCFTA monitoring, implementation and coordination *** South-South Sensitization and Consultations Forum unanimously adopt Calabar Communique, endorsing the AFCFTA. Executive Governor Prof. Ben Ayade, states a powerful case for Nigeria's membership of the AFCFTA and accepts the role of "AFCFTA Champion" *** South-East Stakeholders endorse the Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area, under the leadership of Imo State Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha in Owerri, Imo State. *** National Stakeholders' Sensitization and Consultation on the Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) across the six geopolitical zones will be holding in Owerri, South-East zone on the 21st of May, 2018. *** The AfCFTA Stakeholders’ North-Central Forum in Makurdi concludes with a range of views, including, the position that the Agreement would be premature prior to implementation of trade-related complementary policy ***

Nigeria, ECOWAS, Major World Economies Adopt Abuja Statement

Nigeria, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), World Trade Organisation (WTO) Friends of Investment Facilitation for Development (FIFD) and participants at the High Level Policy and Private Sector Trade and Investment Facilitation Partnership Forum today adopted a declaration titled “The Abuja Statement” at the close of the two-day event, which saw the participation of over 30 African countries as well as major world economies The Forum was opened yesterday the 2nd of November by Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo with the support of the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah The Abuja Statement on “Deepening Africa’s Integration in the Global Economy through Trade and Investment Facilitation for Development” was unanimously adopted after two days of intensive deliberations between policy makers and the business community from around the world The Statement reaffirmed that trade and investment are inseparable and remain indispensable “twin engines” for economic growth, modernization and development of Africa It reiterated the need to scale up investments in “connectivity” – infrastructure - ports, transport corridors and telecommunications networks to enable Africa participate and benefit from today’s integrated and digital global economy. It supported the ongoing Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) negotiations in Africa. The Statement said: “One of the central objectives of the High Level Forum was to examine how the WTO could contribute to facilitating the required investment –as well as trade by developing multilateral approaches to improving transparent, cutting red tape, streamlining procedures and strengthening international cooperation with the aim of expanding sustainable pro-development investment.” Furthermore more, the Statement noted: “Participants underscored the importance of enabling developing and least developing countries to increase their participation in global investment flows, including by mobilizing resources needed to address their technical and capacity constraints.” The Statement called for a successful 11th WTO Ministerial Conference in Buenos Aires in December to strengthen the WTO as a global public good that remains central to the welfare, prosperity and development of all its members. The Statement further emphasized that policies, institutions and best practices are required for expanding the required investment in the domestic economies of African countries, the region and continent In his reaction, Minister Enelamah said: “The new narrative of Nigeria out there: that the country is positive, pro-development, pro-business and pro-enabling environment for business.” On his part, the Director General/Chief Negotiator of the Nigerian Office for Trade Negotiations (NOTN) Ambassador Chiedu Osakwe stated that “This High Level Forum on Trade and Investment Facilitation held in Abuja, was an acknowledgment of Nigeria’s economic and trade policy leadership in West Africa, Africa and the global economy.” The High Level Forum was co-hosted by the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, ECOWAS in partnership with FIFD. Members of FIFD coalition are Nigeria, Argentina, China, Australia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Hong Kong China, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Pakistan, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, Canada, the European Union, Qatar Other participants at the Forum were WTO DG Roberto Azevedo; Secretary General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Mukhisa Kituyi, African Union (AU) Commissioner for Trade and Industry Albert Muchanga, President of ECOWAS Commission Marcel Alain de Souza and CEOs and business leaders from Hauwei, Procter and Gamble, Vodacom, etc