President of the Africa Development Bank Akinwumi Adesina has expressed confidence in Nigeria signing the Africa Free Trade Agreement eventually.
According to him, different countries have their processes, but everyone will come around.
“I think Nigeria is doing the right thing, actually consulting with its private sector, and having the dialogue that they need to have, and every country should have that kind of a dialogue,” he told CNBC Africa in South Africa on Friday, after the Africa Investment Forum.
“I am 100 percent convinced that every single African country is going to sign it. Countries have different processes of getting consensus and stuff like that; that’s alright, but what matters for me is the end.
“Why do I think that is important? First and foremost is that if you take the continental free trade area of Africa, it is going to be the largest free trade zone in the world after since the WTO was created in the 1948 or something like that.
“You cannot ignore it, this free trade zone is going to increase the trade in Africa by about $30 billion per year.
“It is going to increase intra-Africa trade from roughly about 14, 15 percent today to 53 percent, it is going to create massive amount of jobs for us, who doesn’t want to grow?”
Forty-nine countries on the continent have signed unto the continental free trade agreement, including South Africa, and excluding Nigeria.
President Muhammadu Buhari is holding back because of the security implication of such agreement on Nigeria.