Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the East African Business Council (EABC) to promote and facilitate trade cooperation among business communities in the two regions.
The President of ACCI, Dr Al-Mujtaba Abubakar while speaking at the signing of MoU between the Chamber and the EABC on Thursday stated that the MoU is to boost commercial information exchange, customer due diligence information and offers a platform for alternative dispute resolution on trade matters.
Statistics revealed that Intra African trade is less than 20%, but the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) instrument offers greater advantage for Africa.
“This MoU establishes a framework for cooperation on all the formalities needed, policies to be harmonised, trade and business relations to factor in the opportunities on both sides, digitisation, information sharing, capacity building and general support, especially technical support to all the parties.
He said the signing of this MoU would reaffirm this partnership with modalities of cooperation and types of activities to include: Maximization of the benefits of the AfCFTA and opportunities for parties involved; and Creation of opportunities for parties to grow commerce, industry and import/export.
“I know that we all share the same feeling of excitement and optimism when we think of the wonderful possibilities that can come about by virtue of this historic partnership.”
The partnership between ACCI and EABC would leverage on the expertise and networking reach of both parties to carry out activities that will promote Intra-African Trade amongst members.
The purpose of the MoU is to outline roles, scope and approach in the collaboration between the parties towards the opportunities that can be harnessed to strengthen intra-African trade.
The Chief Executive Officer EABC, Mr. John Bosco Kalisa while speaking at the signing of the MoU also stated that they believe in the opportunities they can get by working with ACCI.
He said to strengthen the partnership, they have to consider that the center of it all is AfCFTA as the instrument which will leap the African economy to a better advantage.
The Director General ACCI, Victoria Akai gave a brief of the activities and structure of the Chamber. ACCI is a Grade-A Chamber leading the organised private sector and partnering with government to foster socioeconomic development and national prosperity through the promotion of trade, investments and enterprise.
ACCI operates through four Centres; the Dispute Resolution Centre (DRC), Policy Advocacy Centre (PAC), Abuja Trade Centre (ATC) and the Business Entrepreneurship Skills and Technology Centre (BEST). These Centres together with the secretariat are the vehicles through which ACCI implements its activities. All of our Centres have been adopted by the umbrella body, the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines, and Agriculture (NACCIMA).
Our engagement with the international Chambers of Commerce has placed us as one of the top five best
ABUJA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY
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training Centers owned by a Chamber of Commerce in the world. We have a close relationship with the Customs, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade, and investment (FMITI). This relationship will be of additional advantage to this new partnership.
The DG speaking further said, ACCI is basically MSMEs Chamber of Commerce, stating that of the over 2000 members, 98% are under the MSMEs category. We also have the Women in Business Trade Group, and a policy of engaging at least 50% female participation in all activities. The Chamber encourages the women to improve their businesses. Among our category of membership is also the Young CEOs for businesses owned by persons under 30 years of age.
About Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI): The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry is duly incorporated in Nigeria under the Companies and Allied Matters Act in August 1986 as a non-governmental organisation with the mandate of promoting and protecting industry and trade of the business community in Abuja, Nigeria, Africa and Globally and is represented by the Director General.
About East African Business Council: The East African Business Council (EABC) is the regional apex body of private sector associations and Corporates from the 6 East African countries. It was established in 1997 to foster the interests of the private sector in the integration process of the East African Community. EABC vision is a borderless East Africa for business and investment. The primary mission is to promote sustainable private sector-driven growth in the EAC.
About The Technical Partner: The technical partner is a team of seasoned International Economic Law and Project Management experts with good knowledge of regional integration initiatives.
Dr Al-Mujtaba Abukabar, FCA, MFR
President, Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry