Sunday, August 27, 2006

creation of a pan-African stock exchange

Also topical at the summit will be progress towards the creation of the United States of Africa.

A report is expected to be tabled by the Committee of Heads of State and Government on the Realisation of Political and Economic Integration which has been tasked with the responsibility to spearhead the establishment of the United States of Africa

The idea of a United States of Africa is the brainchild of Libyan president Muammar Gaddafi who has since 2000 pushed for the unification of Africa as a national and sovereign federation of states similar to the United States of America.

The creation of the federation of African states presupposes the establishment of the African Economic Community built around free trade areas (FTAs) in the continent’s four main regions.
One of these building blocks is the Southern African Development Community (SADC), which is targeting becoming an FTA by 2008. Significant progress has been made since 2000 in phasing out tariffs on intra-regional trade.
The SADC Protocol on Trade was signed in 1996 but a meticulous negotiation process delayed its implementation until 2000.
The target is to have 85 percent of all products traded in the SADC region at zero tariff by 2008.
The AU is also pursuing the free movement of persons across the continent and introduction of an African diplomatic passport, a development that would quicken the transition towards a United States of Africa.

The AU leaders will also consider during the Khartoum summit a proposal by Libya to shake off the legacy of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) and introduce a new logo and flag for the AU.
The AU was launched in Durban, South Africa, in July 2002 to replace the OAU but the symbols of the organisation have not changed. Libya will push at the summit that these are changed to reflect the organisation’s new identity.
Other issues expected to be discussed at the summit include the impact of HIV and AIDS on the continent, creation of a pan-African stock exchange with a seat in Egypt or South Africa, establishment of a fund to alleviate the effects of increases in oil price on poor countries.


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