Addis Ababa — Technical experts to consult on implementing Boosting Intra-African Trade (BIAT) and the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) initiatives
The 18th Ordinary Session of the AU Summit, which met in Addis Ababa in January 2012, adopted the Boosting of Intra-African Trade and the Continental Free Trade Area initiatives and directed the AUC, in collaboration with the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and development partners, to develop an implementation strategy for the initiative.
The African Trade Policy Centre (ATPC) of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has been the principal technical partner of the AUC and the RECs in the development of the implementation strategy. In this capacity, the Centre has received requests from the RECs and their host countries for technical assistance to operationalize the strategy, including the setting up of appropriate BIAT/CFTA structures and to develop concrete and implementable Action Plans for the Boosting of intra-African trade.
With the financial support of UNDP, eight consultants (one for each of the AU- recognized RECs and the host countries) have been recruited for the assignment. To assist the consultants in this important task and to ensure delivery of optimum output, ATPC has prepared operational guidelines, detailing process activities to be undertaken during the consultancy period; the objectives, the responsibilities, and expected outputs/outcomes for each process activity has been outlined. This is an innovative approach to support project implementation, and the precision provided by the guidelines is expected to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the consultants.
Against this background, a technical meeting to brief the consultants on the operational guidelines and other BIAT/CFTA related issues, is scheduled for Tuesday, 8 October 2013 at the United Nations Conference Centre. It will be attended by the selected BIAT/CFTA consultants and officials from AUC, UNDP and ECA.