- AfCFTA’s ‘How to Export with the AfCFTA training programme’ was designed with African businesses in mind.
- In 2020, Afreximbank and ITC begun a trial programme in Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria, and Rwanda as a test.
- ITC and Afreximbank have made the online component of the curriculum publicly available on the Afreximbank Academy online platform.
Small businesses will start benefitting from a training programme on exporting within the African Continental Free Area (AfCFTA).
This follows the launch of the new training programme by the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the African Import-Export Bank (Afreximbank).
The training programme was launched during the Intra-African Trade Fair 2021 (IATF2021), taking place in Durban, South Africa from November 17 to 21. For previously under-represented populations, the training programme strives to break down barriers to commerce.
The AfCFTA’s ‘How to Export with the AfCFTA training programme’ was designed with African businesses in mind. Small enterprises will be equipped with the tools they need to take advantage of the new trading climate and the AfCFTA’s operationalization.
In 2020, Afreximbank and ITC begun a trial programme in Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria, and Rwanda as a test of this new programme concept. There were around 1,500 applications for the course within the first few days of its release, indicating a strong degree of interest in its subject.
An innovative new training programme uses case studies to study major export principles in the context of businesses and the challenges they confront when trying to break into the international market.
Export readiness, market research, market development, market access conditions, trade finance, and international logistics are all topics that fall under this umbrella. Its focus on intra-African export operations and the advantages of intra-regional commerce will benefit entrepreneurs.
ITC and Afreximbank have made the online component of the curriculum publicly available on the Afreximbank Academy online platform to ensure that traditionally marginalized groups, such as women and youth, can participate.
Phase two will include the translation of the programme, currently available in English and French, into Arabic and Portuguese following the successful implementation of the pilot phase. In addition, the internet component will be rolled out to all 55 African nations.
Pamela Coke-Hamilton, the ITC’s Executive Director said, “The AfCFTA’s How to Export with the AfCFTA training programme is essential in empowering African small enterprises and promoting intra-African trade.”
She added that it is common for small enterprises to claim difficulties discovering overseas business possibilities and an inability to analyze export markets as the major obstacles to exporting.
IATF2021 multibillion dollar transactions
The training programme, she enthused, will play a critical role in enabling them to contribute to the Agreement’s success by providing them with information, expertise, and tools to tackle the obstacles of international trade.
At the end on the IATF2021, transactions of US$36 billion were recorded.
Kanayo Awani, Managing Director of Afreximbank’s Intra-African Trade Initiative, reported at the closing ceremony in Durban that 11,828 people attended the event physically, while over 27,000 did so via the IATF Virtual platform, which streamed the event live and offered other features that replicated the physical trade fair, bringing the total number of participants to about 39,000.
More than 128 countries were represented at the IATF 2021 conference.
Awani also announced that IATF 2021 saw 1,161 exhibitors, including 838 companies from 59 countries, of which 46 were from Africa, showcase their goods and services, in what was recognized as a massively successful event, against a target of 1,100 exhibitors as set out in the key performance indicators revealed in 2019.
IATF 2018 had set a target of US$32 billion in commercial deals, but Awani said that, as of November 21, 2021, there were 36 deals in the books, surpassing that figure by more than a tenth.
Double the amount of countries represented in the first Cairo 2018 event, four days were dedicated to South Africa, Egypt, Côte d’Ivoire and Nigeria.
Chairman of the IATF Advisory Council Chief Olusegun Obasanjo hailed IATF as a movement toward an economically secure Africa.
For a four-month preparation period, Durban had seven heads of state and government in attendance, including President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria and the leaders of Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe, as well as Zanzibar’s President, Hussein Mwinyi and Rwanda’s Prime Minister, Edouard Ngirente.
This next IATF event will be held in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, in 2023.
The ITC and Afreximbank training curriculum is publicly available on the Afreximbank Academy.