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Monday, December 6, 2021

African countries urged to update trade laws to boost intra-Africa trade

The 64th ARSO Council Meeting is being held in Accra The 64th ARSO Council Meeting is being held in Accra

African countries must meet WTO standards

AFCFTA can eliminate poverty in Africa

Finalisation and approval of Ghana’s National Quality Policy in the offing

Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Trade, Industry and Tourism, Carlos Kingsley Ahenkorah, has urged all national bodies in Africa to move from outdated laws and policies to stay within modern trends of trade globally.

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According to him, doing that will reduce trade barriers on the continent.

“Once our quality policies are in line with the Pan African Quality Policy and once, we use African standards, we will automatically reduce several barriers to trade and improve the ease of doing business on the continent. This will improve African industry and create wealth” he said.

He said this at the 65th Council Meeting of the African Organization for Standardization on November 24, 2021, in Accra.

Stressing on the importance of intra-African trade, Mr Ahenkorah indicated that poverty can be substantially eliminated if opportunities presented by the free trade agreement are properly leveraged.

“For us in Ghana, the success of the AfCFTA is critical to Africa as a whole. We are a continent with huge potential and we can lift our people out of poverty and into prosperity by boosting intra-African trade. We must trade amongst ourselves and increase wealth and prosperity among our people. This is a charge we cannot ignore”.

On steps taken by the government to update its laws, Carlos Ahenkorah noted that:

“Ghana is therefore nearing the end of the process to get a new, modern, fit-for-purpose legislation to give the necessary legislative powers to the Ghana Standards Authority. As the main trade facilitation statutory body in Ghana, Parliament aims to give the GSA legislative backing which will be future-proof and which will also provide for the needed financial and human resources to enable the GSA undertake its critical role in Ghana. In addition, I am also happy to inform you that the Ghana National Quality Policy is being finalised and will be approved soon.”

The theme for the 65th Council Meeting of the African Organization for Standardization was “the beginning of trade among the African countries under the AFCFTA agreement: Boosting intra-African trade within the African single market through one standard – one test- one certificate- accepted everywhere.”

Addressing the delegation, Mr. Ahenkorah noted that the council meeting is happening at a time where the African Continental Free trade has become topical for Africa’s trade and development.

He added that Ghana is committed to providing the necessary support to ensure the success of the agreement, as the host country.

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