The inaugural Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF 2018) ended in the Egyptian capital, Cairo, Monday with Kigali being announced as the host of the 2020 event – the second edition.
Olusegun Obasanjo, the former President of Nigeria, who is also the Chairman of the IATF Advisory Council, made the announcement during the closing ceremony, saying that Kigali was selected following a competitive bidding process that took into account a set of criteria and guidelines outlined for IATF hosts.
Sheikh Saleh Habimana, Rwanda’s Ambassador to Egypt, said that the selection of Kigali was an honour and privilege for Rwanda, noting that it was coming after the historic signing of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) in that city in March.
“The people and Government of Rwanda will ensure that IATF2020 is a stepping stone to assist in intra-African trade. Rwanda will do its best,” he said.
This year’s event in Cairo attracted 100 exhibitors from across Africa and beyond.
It was organized by African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) together with the African Union Commission and the Government of Egypt.
Economic Commission for Africa modeling exercises indicates that AfCFTA established in 2017 has the potential to lift intra-African trade by 52.3 per cent from 2010 to 2022.
In terms of intra African trade, different studies put Africa at about 15 per cent, compared to Europe (68 per cent), North America (37 percent), and Latin America.