Vice President of Industrial Global Union, Issa Aremu, at the commemoration of 2019 Africa Industrialization Day (AID) in Calabar called for appropriate trade policy to drive the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AFCTFA).
He said though AFCTFA is to create a single market for goods and services, but warned that it has to be for the benefit of the trading countries, African economies and their workers.
“An appropriately trade policy is one of the principal drivers of prosperous and inclusive societies with decent economic, social, and ecological development. Conversely inappropriate, trade policy could deepen under development, poverty and violence,” he said.
Emphasising on the theme of this year’s, “Positioning African Industry to Supply the AfCFTA Market”, Aremu said what Africa needs is fair trade as unfair trade practices with Nigeria in particular, have undermined domestic production.
He reasoned that smuggling and dumping have also assumed security dimensions as some border countries facilitated illegal importation of all goods including arms which in turn arm criminals and insurgents.
“How do we explain the revelation that since the land borders were closed, Nigerian government has seized over N2.3 trillion worth of contraband, almost a quarter of 2019 budget?,” he queried.
He advised that the land border closure must continue as long as they bring about economic gains and ensure fair trade which is what African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) envisage.