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Trade & Investments Concept Paper
Trade and Investment have the potential to lift millions of Africans from economic
malaise, underdevelopment and poverty.
A number of African organizations including NEPAD, AU, various regional
economic communities such as SADC, SACU, COMESA, EAC, ECOWAS etc,
However, regional integration in Africa has been slow and the enforcement
mechanisms are very weak and underdeveloped.
CGICE seeks to work with these regional economic integration institutions and
member countries to promote implementation and enforcement of WTO and
regional trade agreements with the objective of creating a good trade and
CGICE will also assist with monitoring the Economic Partnership Agreements
(EPAs) to ensure that they deliver on their development promises. Africa’s trade
with China is also increasing - the value of trade between China and Africa
increased by an average 24% between 1995 and 2007, with total trade (imports
and exports) of approximately US$74 billion in 2007.
CGICE will work with the public and private sector to ensure that the trade and
investment relation between Africa and China is strengthened and ensure that it
is mutually beneficial.
Africa has also good trade relations with the US and AGOA provides some
African countries with preferential access to the world’s largest economy.
However, due to preference erosion, the value of these preferences has been
eroded and there is a need to improve the relationship between Africa and the
US to enable Africa to fully exploit its potential in trade.
At the multilateral level, there is the need to ensure that WTO, which is
responsible for writing global trade rules, promotes Africa's development needs,
particularly in the Doha Development Agenda and beyond.
The abovementioned trade arrangements have enormous implications for Africa
and CGICE will monitor these agreements and conduct systematic and scientific
research on how trade and investment can be used to promote economic growth
and alleviate poverty.
Increasing participation and integrating into the world economy has been a vital
strategy for countries that have achieved economic growth and development and
it will be crucial for Africa’s development.
Africa’s trade has been increasing slightly but the slight upswing in the past three
years mostly reflects rising oil prices and is confined to a handful of countries
especially oil producing countries.
Although the total levels of merchandise trade have increased for all African
countries, sub-Saharan Africa’s share of world trade has been in decline for a
long time, most markedly since the 1980s.
Africa’s relative performance in the global market has reached drastically low
levels in the past thirty years.
Deteriorating world trade performance means opportunities lost and the World
Bank estimates that Africa’s decline in trade represents a loss equivalent to $70
billion annually – five times the $13 billion received in aid and 21 percent of GDP.
In Africa, very few Universities actually teach international trade and investment
The first initiative was taken in 2003 by the University of Western Cape and
Pretoria (under donor funding) to sponsor courses on international trade and
The Commonwealth Secretariat in partnership with the EU and the ACP states
has established a big project aimed at assisting ACP countries in formulating,
negotiating and implementing trade policy and agreements.
CGICE seeks to build upon these initiatives and contribute to capacity building on
trade policy formulation, negotiations and implementation.
Another challenge for CGICE is to broaden the above initiatives and to
collaborate with overseas institutions, private sectors and donors to engage in
practical research on trade and investment and advise African governments and
the private sector on how they can fully exploit their natural resources especially
through value addition and export promotion.
Africa is heavily endowed with natural resources, yet it is still one of the poorest
CGICE will collaborate with existing institutions and the donor community and
develop synergies on a wide range of areas that are of interest to the institution to
ensure that trade and investment play a vital role in the development of the
It is also important to note that the unstable political climate, violation of human
rights and fundamental freedoms by some African nations makes it difficult to
attract investment and promote exports.
CGICE will support the current efforts aimed at improving the business
environment to ensure that a stable and conducive business climate is created.
It is patently clear that a lot of foreign investment will be needed in order to
promote production of goods and services that can be competitively traded
Investment is primarily required to improve the infrastructure that is needed to
create a good business environment and to lower costs of doing business.
Another challenge is to decide which services sectors to open to foreign investors
and the need for laws to regulate such services before they are liberalized.
African governments need to put in place relevant laws and policies to promote
genuine investments that are needed to promote development and protect public
How we work;
The Centre Of Excellency carries out its work by means of policy- linked research,
training, technical cooperation, capacity building, publications, conference activities
advocacy and advisory.
It collaborates with governments, intergovernmental organizations, academics,
students, business community, civil societies and public communities.
We are able to accomplish this project only by sourcing funding/sponsorship from
partnerships/alliances, regional and international institutions, corporations, NGOs,
Governments, business communities and well-wishers.
We are appealing for any form of funding/sponsorship/partnership for the success of
this nonprofit making public interest organization. Enhance your social responsibility
by collaborating with CGICE for a good cause. Visit our web site
We are a dedicated team of International Lawyers, Business Strategists, Public
Health and Corporate Governance Professionals with a network of consultants and
academics operating locally and internationally with the common objectives.
Interested professionals are welcome to submit their resume or articles via our web
Advisory Directorate team.