Prez to commission and hand over AfCFTA Secretariat building

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President Akufo-Addo is set to commission and hand over the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat building to the African Union Commission (AUC).

The commissioning will take place on Monday, August 17, 2020 in the capital city, Accra.

This was contained in a press statement co-signed by the Trade Minister, and Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey who is the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and issued on Thursday evening.

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Ghana was selected by the African Union member states to host the AfCFTA Secretariat at the 12th African Union Extraordinary Summit held in Niamey [Niger] in July 2019.

“As part of the obligations and commitments under the Host Country Agreement, Ghana is required to provide a fully furnished office complex as the Headquarters for the AfCFTA Secretariat and an official residence for the Secretary-General”, the statement read.

The ministers added that, “the AfCFTA Secretariat will administer the free trade agreement creating a Single Market for 55 countries with a combined population of 1.2 billion and a total Gross Domestic Product of about US$ 2.5 trillion. So far, 54 countries have signed the Agreement with 28 countries ratifying same”.

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According to the statement, the hosting of the AfCFTA Secretariat in Ghana will promote Ghana as an attractive regional and investment hub in Africa, boost economic activities, and provide job opportunities for Ghanaians.

Chairperson of the AU Commission, the newly-elected AfCFTA Secretary-General, Speaker of Parliament, Prof Mike Oquaye, Chairman of the Council of State among other dignitaries will be present at the function.

The statement noted that a limited number of other guests from both private and public sectors can be invited to witness the ceremony in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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