Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has urged the newly inaugurated African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) technical working groups to give off their best in order to ensure that Ghana’s interest in the continental trade arrangement is protected and advanced.
Following Ghana’s successful bid to host the Secretariat of the AfCFTA, the government out-doored a group of technocrats, experts and stakeholders in trade, drawn from various state agencies and other related organisations, to develop an effective implementation of Ghana’s National Programme of Action for boosting Intra-African Trade.
Speaking at an official inaugural ceremony in Accra on Monday, 17 February 2020, the Foreign Affairs Minister charged the various groups to work in the interest of the nation.
“You’ve been selected from your respective institutions to be part of these groups by virtue of your intellectual and technical competencies. The country is, therefore, depending on you to ensure that Ghana is not short-changed in this arrangement and that Ghana’s trade with the rest of the continent is beneficial to her citizens” Ms Botchwey noted.
While expressing gratitude to the team members for availing themselves of service to Ghana, the minister urged the technical working groups to “give off your best for our dear country”.
The African trade agreement is expected to take off in July 2020 after the just-ended 33rd AU Assembly elected Mr Wamkele Mene, former South African Head of Mission to the World Trade Organisation and South Africa’s Chief Negotiator in the African Continental Free Trade Area negotiations, as the first Secretary-General of the AfCFTA Secretariat.