UNCT U N I T E D N A T I O N S C O N F E R E N C E O N T R A D E A N D D E V E L O P M E N T AD The advent of the African Continental Free Trade Area represents a historic ECONOMIC EMBARGO The contents of this Report must not be quoted or summarized opportunity for the continent to boost intra-African trade and accelerate in the print, broadcast or electronic media before 26 June 2019, 17:00 GMT structural transformation. However, this relies on a critical policy instrument – the DEVELOPMENT IN effective implementation of preferential trade liberalization among the members of the African Continental Free Trade Area. Whether African firms, in practice, will use tariff preferences under the African Continental Free Trade Area depends on a critical factor: rules of origin and the net benefits of complying with them. The Economic Development in Africa Report 2019 argues for the adoption of lenient and flexible rules of origin and a strengthening of institutional capacities to ensure impartial, transparent and predictable implementation of agreed rules ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN REPORT 2019 of origin. unctad.org/Africa/series “Rules of origin in the African Continental “The UNCTAD Economic Development Free Trade Area lie at the core of what in Africa Report 2019 makes a valuable it is means for goods to be ‘made in contribution to ongoing discussions Africa’ and for Africa. At the eve of the on rules of origin, which are an entry into force of the world’s largest important facilitator of intraregional free trade area, this report provides the trade in Africa. Rules of origin are a AFRICA basis for decision-making over the right vital component in all market access set of rules of origin for the development agreements undertaken in accordance REPOR of a selection of African value chains. I with World Trade Organization rules. am proud to count the report among the This timely report recognizes the T 2019 contributions of UNCTAD as a strategic role that context-specific rules of partner of the African Union for the origin can play in contributing to the African Continental Free Trade Area.” successful implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area – which is of Mukhisa Kituyi importance to us all.” Secretary-General, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Roberto Azevêdo Made in Africa Director-General, World Trade Organization Rules of origin for enhanced intra-African trade UNITED NA TIONS “This year’s edition of the UNCTAD Economic Development in Africa Report is an important contribution to the understanding of rules of origin in the African Continental Free Trade Area. It is a valuable policy tool that will be complementary to the online Rules of Origin Facilitator of the International Trade Centre. The work of our two institutions on this critical issue can help set the basis for simpler and more transparent rules of origin and, in turn, make it easier for microenterprises and small and medium-sized enterprises to expand their intra-Africa trade.” Arancha González Executive Director, International Trade Centre “A major milestone towards achieving economic sustainability of the African continent is the entry into force of the Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area, which will further enhance regional integration and trade facilitation. The World Customs Organization believes that this offers African leaders an opportunity to agree upon an ambitious and tailor-made set of rules of origin that will serve to reinvigorate intracontinental trade and development. This report makes a significant contribution in support of this African initiative” Kunio Mikuriya Secretary-General, World Customs Organization “In a world of spreading preferential trade agreements and of growth of trade in tasks, rules of origin stand in the middle, which risks making these two incompatible. Nowhere is this more evident than in Africa. This report is the first in-depth scrutiny of the challenges ahead on the road towards the necessary convergence of rules of origin across the regional economic communities.” Jaime de Melo Senior Fellow, Foundation for Studies and Research on International Development U N I T E D N A T I O N S C O N F E R E N C E O N T R A D E A N D D

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