Accelerating Growth Through Improved Intra-Africa Trade

Experts from the Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings have been asked by the African Union Mission in Washington to contribute practical ideas for increasing intra-African trade for the African Union’s consideration. The policy briefs that make up this report highlight the major barriers to intraregional trade, provide country-specific case studies and present thoughtful policy recommendations. It is hoped that the African Union and the other stakeholders in Africa will find this analysis useful in the promotion of trade on the continent.

Download the full report » (PDF) 

Introduction: Intra-African Trade in Context » (PDF)

Why Intra-African Trade Matters: Working Locally to Go Global » (PDF)
John Page presents a big-picture view of intra-African trade with a special emphasis on its role in the wider, global economy. 

Eliminating Barriers to Internal Commerce to Facilitate Intraregional Trade » (PDF) 
Olumide Taiwo and Nelipher Moyo examine barriers to the movement of goods and people within African countries. They present strategies to eliminate internal barriers to commerce as a prerequisite for increasing regional trade in Africa. 

Trade Preferences and Value Chains » (PDF)
Mwangi S. Kimenyi, Zenia A. Lewis and Brandon Routman discuss how foreign trade preferences and cross-border value chains can promote intra-African trade. 

Intraregional Trade and Restrictions on the Movement of People » (PDF)
Mwangi S. Kimenyi and Jessica Smith consider two issues that hinder the mobility of people in Sub-Saharan Africa, which they believe can be addressed through improved policy coordination and border management capacity.

Enhancing Intra-African Trade through Functional Cooperation » (PDF)
Anne Kamau examines the potential for functional cooperation between African trading partners, as an alternative to market and currency unions, to enhance intraregional trade.

Country and Regional Case Studies

Kenya’s Trade within the East African Community: Institutional and Regulatory Barriers » (PDF)
Augustus Muluvi, Paul Kamau, Simon Githuku and Moses Ikiara describe Kenya’s regional trade performance, institutional barriers to increasing trade, and policies that would alleviate these associated problems. 

Barriers to Uganda’s Trade within the Regional Trade Blocs of EAC and COMESA » (PDF)
Lawrence Othieno examines the barriers to Uganda’s intraregional trade within the East African Community and the Common Market for East and Southern Africa and proposes solutions for improved trade within these groups. 

Dynamics of Trade between Nigeria and other ECOWAS Countries » (PDF)
Louis N. Chete and A. O. Adewuyi prescribe solutions for scaling up Nigeria’s limited trade within the Economic Community of West African States.