Dayo Olopade, a member of the African Leadership Network, reflects on the boundaries affecting intra-African trade between North Africa and Southern Africa in this piece for Quartz. Her launch pad for exploration is the recent ALN Annual Gathering in Marrakech, which welcomed African leaders from across the continent to engage with one another in the interests of creating prosperity on the continent.
“Even as culture, music, and religion have circulated north to south, trade dollars on both sides of the Sahara have sought foreign markets first. Intra African trade, at 11.3% of total trade, is famously low—bested only by intra-Maghreb trade, at 2%. It’s cold comfort that neither sub-region of Africa has been economically engaged on the continent. “There is a lot of work that still needs to be done to integrate Africa—south with north, east with west, central with the rest,” says Francis Gatare, chief executive of the Rwanda Development Board.”
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