Trade facilitation to open up Africa’s potential - Davies
10 September 2012
Creamer Media's Engineering News: Africa’s economic potential as the next leading source of global economic growth could remain unfulfilled if the barriers to international and inter-regional trade were not addressed, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies said on Monday.
Speaking at the Southern Africa Trade Facilitation conference, in Johannesburg, he pointed out that, despite Africa’s position as the second-fastest growing continent after Asia, inadequate infrastructure, the limitations of small and fragmented markets and the inadequate diversification of industrial structures, were responsible for the low levels of trade.
The World Bank’s ‘Trading Across Borders’ indice ranked Southern African countries in the lowest quartile, ranking between 136 and 164, among 183 countries.
The high costs and lengthy duration of movement of goods over Southern African borders, which reduced commerce and industry competition and discouraged trade, needed to be mitigated through efficient trade facilitation and cost-effective transport services, logistics and customs reforms.