By Nevson Mpofu Munhumutapa
TRALAC, Trade Law Centre based in South Africa, Cape Town is hosting a 2-day virtual conference in its home town. It runs from 21 to 22 September. The conference braves the chill of covid-19 to address Trade Governance matters in Africa.
TRALAC Administrative Assistant Madeline Herterotz who invited and posted the program to the Pan-African-Visions points out that the conference is a design meant to look at the future of World Trade Organization. It looks as well on taking lessons learnt from the devastating effects and consequences of covid-19 in the Region.
Multi-Lateral trading systems require reforms in the era of covid-19. There are plurilateral and multilateral agreements made under the [World Trade Organization], WTO and AFCFTA, [African Continental Free Trade Area.] A World Bank Study has come out with a document on the benefits to come from reducing red tape and improving customs of boarder management.
The second issue looks at the overview of key features of AFCFTA up-date on negotiations and preparations post covid-19. Extended information looks at the adoption of Digital Trade Solutions in an era of covid-19 and global challenges currently faced.
The conference dubbed Trade Governance In Africa Midst a Pandemic of Global Challenges attracts a panel of presenters and moderators to cheer and spear-head the program with key-note opening from H.E Wamkele Mune ,African Continental Free Trade Area’ Secretary General .
Among the Plenipotentiary delegates are Mr Allan Wolf, Deputy Director World Trade Organization. Panel discussion follows on the same day with a focus on What is expected from AFCFTA to deliver. What is necessary to achieve outcomes. Also present is Ms Valentinah Minta – Board Member International Chamber of Commerce. Mr Victor Liman, Chief Trade Negotiator, Director General for the Nigerian Office for Trade Negotiations, Ms Monica Musonda Java Foods CEO, Mr Ahmed Bennis, Secretary General of African Economic Zones Organization. Ms Treasure Maphanga stands in as Moderator. She is TRALAC Board Member.
The second panel discussion is on what is to be done to facilitate Trade in Africa. Present are Ms Lily Sommer , African Trade Policy Center Department of United Nations Economic Commission [UNECA] .Mr Jason Blackman is DHL Express Director for Sub-Saharan Africa . Mr Etiyel Chibira is from the Cross Boarders Trans-Agency of South Africa. Ms Muna Hassan is from WTO. The Moderator is Trudi Hartzenburg of TRALAC. The presentation to be read looks at Overviews, Negotiations, Up-Date and Africa’s Global Trade Relations.
The Key-Note Address will be presented by Albert Muchanga , Commissioner for Trade and Industry , AUC [ African Union Commission] . The closing will be done by TRALAC Board Chairman, George Lipimile .