Posted: June 30, 2023
The Department of Trade, Industry, and Competition (the dtic) in partnership with the City of Cape Town Metropolitan Municipality, the Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism and the Western Cape Tourism, Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (Wesgro), are pleased to announce the upcoming workshop on the implementation and operationalisation of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA). The event is scheduled to take place at the Southern Sun Cape Sun Hotel on Friday, 7 July 2023 at 09:00, as part of a nationwide series of workshops.
Following the successful hosting of workshops in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, and Mpumalanga, the primary objective of these gatherings is to apprise South African companies and export-ready Small and Medium Enterprises on the benefits of trading under the AfCFTA, which intends to create a single continental market with a population of about 1.3 billion foster partnerships and collaboration with the private sector,), women-owned businesses, and youth-owned export-ready enterprises.
The AfCFTA seeks to establish a large single continental market, encompassing a population of approximately 1.3 billion people and a combined Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of approximately USD 3.4 trillion. By participating in preferential trade beyond the Southern African region, South African companies can unlock significant progress and benefits for their respective businesses.
According to the Chief Director of Africa Multilateral Economic Relations at the dtic, Mr Sandile Tyini, the workshop seeks to communicate and engage with the private sector, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), as well as women and youth-owned export ready businesses on the status of the implementation of the AfCFTA, including opportunities for South African companies to participate in preferential trade beyond the Southern African region.
“The workshop will focus on six sector master plans, namely steel and metal fabrication; agriculture and agro-processing; retail-clothing, textiles, footwear, and leather (R-CTFL) value chain; automotive industry; sugar value chain; and forestry. These workshops will also identify companies, within the provinces, in the targeted sector master plans, as well as other priority sectors that wish to export to the rest of the continent. In addition, the workshops will expose export ready companies to the benefits of exporting under the AfCFTA,” says Tyini.
The AfCFTA presents tremendous opportunities for South African companies to expand and diversify their export base beyond traditional markets in Southern Africa. By exploring new markets in North, West, Central, and Eastern Africa, businesses can tap into previously untapped potential. The continental free trade area also includes mechanisms to support emerging producers, SMEs, as well as women and youth entrepreneurs, enabling them to participate and benefit from the opportunities it offers.
Bongani Lukhele – Director: Media Relations
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Issued by: The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic)