THE Vice-President Dr Philip Mpango has urged African governments to lower trade barriers and enhance infrastructure to benefit from the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) opportunities. Dr Mpango further said that AfCFTA offers the continent’s countries a great potential for economic growth and development.
He made the remarks on Tuesday during a special discussion with senior African leaders involving stakeholders and friends of African countries from other countries at the ongoing World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
“Investing in technology that facilitates trade and financial transactions, as well as forming relationships with the private sector, international organizations and other governments is critical in increasing industrial productivity,” he said.
Tanzania, according to Dr Mpango, is continuing to ensure that the public is aware of the AfCFTA’s opportunities, as well as strengthening the investment sector by forming partnerships with various stakeholders both within and outside Africa, to do business more efficiently in the area.
Dr Mpango also took part in a debate on economic recovery and initiatives that may be taken to restore peace and harmony around the globe, where international leaders debated how to work together to address political issues that lead to war and conflict.
In addition, the vice-president said it is important when the world is facing challenges such as war not to forget other challenges including food insecurity as well as to ensure Africa is involved in making various world decisions.
He said Africa has a great opportunity to contribute to peace and a solution to food security if it joins other nations using available resources.
Dr Mpango is in Davos, Switzerland to represent President Samia Suluhu Hassan at the World Economic Forum meeting involving heads of state, heads of international institutions and organizations as well as business people.
On Monday, Dr Mpango said in response to the global food crisis, African countries must invest heavily in agriculture to meet global food demands.
He said African countries should improve agricultural policies in order to overcome the challenges of food insecurity.
Dr Mpango added that African countries should invest in modern irrigation and sustainable agriculture, infrastructure including roads, and equally set aside land for large-scale farming investments.
He added that due to the challenges of climate change, there is need to invest heavily in industries that will produce agricultural inputs, including fertilisers and improved high-quality seeds.
Elaborating, Vice-President Mpango urged international research institutes to support the efforts of African countries in soil fertility enhancement so as to increase agricultural productivity.
He also stressed the need for global peace, in order to boost the world food production and ease its distributions.
Equally, the vice-president noted that Tanzania is well placed to use its human resources, especially the youth in improving the agricultural value chain by allocating arable land for agricultural productivity that will go hand in hand with the provision of extension services, inputs and reliable markets.