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Business & Finance | Feb 26, 2018

Government Advised On CFTA Approval

Daily Guide
Gyekye Tanoh
Gyekye Tanoh

The Third World Network (TWN) is cautioning government to critically assess the impact of the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) agreement before it signs the pact.

African countries are set to sign the agreement, which is aimed at liberalizing trade among member countries of the CFTA.

But speaking at a forum to discuss the Continental Free Trade Area, Head of Political Economy Unit at the TWN, Gyekye Tanoh, maintained that government must carefully consider the effect of opening Ghana's borders before entering into the pact.

“We think that the model that is being followed is the same model that we've being following for 30 years since the IMF became dominant, since the WTO became dominant, since the European Union imposed the EPA on us. All these agreements have not delivered. If it had delivered we will not be here, where we are today,” he said.

Mr Tanoh argued that past agreements, which were dumped on governments, did not connect with the country's development plans, hence the failure.

He pointed out that the tendency for development partners to adopt similar models of development plans and forcing African countries to implement them is counterproductive.

He was of the view that with the government's agenda to grow the industry sector, it's important for government to fashion trade policies that will be in sync with the trade programmes.

“I think this is an opportunity, especially when you have a government, which for the first time in decades, is beginning to talk about the first level of industry policies by simply implementing a One District, One Factory project. It is such an important first step that requires the trade policy to complement it,” he stressed.