South Africa has put in place the legal and the administrative processes for the start of trade under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) on 1 January 2021 following a decision by the 13th Extra-ordinary Session of the Assembly on the AfCFTA on 5 December 2020 to start trading under the AfCFTA on the basis of legally implementable and reciprocal Tariff Schedules and Concessions, with agreed Rules of Origin.

The AfCFTA integrates a market of 55 countries with a combined GDP of over US$ 3.3 trillion and a population of more than 1 billion people.

The AfCFTA builds on the Tripartite Free Trade Area (TFTA) with the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA), East African Community (EAC) and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC).

The key objectives of the AfCFTA is to among others, create a single market for Goods, Services, and enhance economic integration in the African Continent in accordance with the Pan African Vision of “An integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa” enshrined in Agenda 2063.

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