4 June 2019

ECA and UMA Coordinate Efforts to Bolster Afcfta Implementation in North Africa

Rabat — ECA Executive Secretary Vera Songwe and Arab Maghreb Union Secretary General Taïeb Baccouche agreed in a video-conference meeting on Monday (June 3rd) to hold a workshop on the impact of the AfCFTA on Maghreb economies.

Songwe and Baccouche agreed on the need to coordinate ECA and UMA efforts in order to promote the implementation of the AfCFTA among Arab Maghreb Union countries ("UMA" includes Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia). Currently, Mauritania is the only UMA country that has ratified this agreement, which formally entered into force on 30 May 2019. The AfCFTA is expected to generate a dynamic in favour of value and employment creation in Arab Maghreb economies.

Both ECA and UMA leaders agreed on the need to promote regional integration through effective support to value chain development in Maghreb countries, in accordance with the recommendations of the ECA Office for North Africa Report on the potential for the creation of Regional value Chains in North Africa. ECA and UMA will produce a road map to identify and undertake joint activities addressing sub-regional priorities.

The meeting was held as part of Executive Secretary's quarterly coordination meetings with the UMA Secretary General initiated in March 2019. Other cooperation opportunities were discussed including in areas such as SDGs and Agenda 2063 implementation in Maghreb countries, digitization and statistics.

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