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Nigeria ratifies African Continental Free Trade Area membership

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FEDERAL Executive Council on Wednesday, ratified Nigeria’s membership in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).‎

  Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, disclosed this to journalists at the end of the FEC meeting held  in Abuja.

  AfCFTA was created by the African Continental Free Trade Agreement among 54 of the 55 African Union nations.

  The main objectives of the AfCFTA are to create a single continental market for goods and services, with free movement of business persons and investments, and thus pave the way for accelerating the establishment of the Customs Union.

  With the ratification, Nigeria has beaten the December 5, 2020 deadline set for all countries to ratify their membership.

  The ratification followed a memo from the Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investment which urged the FEC to ratify Nigeria’s membership of the African Continental Free Trade Area.

  Nigeria had signed the AfCTA agreement in Niamey, Niger on July 7, 2019, during the 12th Extraordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union.

  All member-states were given up to December 5, to ratify the agreement.

  “That is precisely what Nigeria did today. The Federal Executive Council approved the ratification of the membership of the African Continental Free Trade Area. It was ratified and as such, we beat the deadline of December 5. Effectively, we hope that by January 1, 2021, the agreement will come into force,” the minister said.

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