As the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) comes into force on the 1st of January 2021, Nigeria is pushing for the ratification of protocols on free movement of persons in Africa to ensure the success of the initiative.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, while delivering a keynote address at the virtual 52nd Annual Conference of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria (CIPMN) on Thursday, said the success of the ACFTA would require a faster ratification of protocol on free movement of persons.
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Osinbajo spoke on Nigeria and manpower preparedness for the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA).
The Vice President, who declared that Nigeria was not scared of ratifying the protocol on free movement of persons, however, noted that other countries were afraid because they felt that migrants could have unfettered access to jobs meant for their nationals.
According to him, “Unlike the free trade agreement, the protocol on free movement of persons is not gathering the desired pace of ratifications. It is not being ratified as quickly as AfCTA.”
He said: “For Nigeria this protocol on free movement of persons is crucial as I said we have comparative advantage in very skilled and competent personnel and these opportunities cannot be realized without the protocols being passed.”
He said Nigeria being the big brother in Africa played a leading role in the ratification of the free trade agreement through the National Office for Trade Negotiation (NOTN).