If fully implemented, AfCFTA could speed up wage growth for women and lift 30 million people out of extreme poverty by 2035, the World Bank report has found. An article by Namibia Economist, dated July 29, 2022, suggests that achieving these gains will be particularly important given the economic damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is expected to cause up to US$79 billion in output losses in Africa from 2020. Real income gains from full implementation of the AfCFTA agreement could increase by 7 per cent, or nearly US$450 billion by 2035. AfCFTA would significantly boost African trade, particularly intra-regional trade in manufacturing. Manufacturing exports would gain the most, 62 per cent overall, with intra-Africa trade increasing by 110 per cent and exports to the rest of the world rising by 46 per cent. COVID-19 has caused major disruptions to trade across the continent, including critical goods such as medical supplies and food. By increasing regional trade, lowering trade costs, and streamlining border procedures, full implementation of AfCFTA would help African countries increase their resiliency in the face of future economic shocks and help usher in the kinds of deep reforms that are necessary to enhance long-term growth. The African
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