Mr Jean Ping

The Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) Mr Jean Ping has called for a speedy economic integration on the continent to improve the people’s wellbeing amid concerns that African countries do not trade enough among themselves.

“The growth of intra-African trade would lay the foundations for a stronger and more sustainable economic growth,” a NEPAD news report quoted Mr Ping as saying at the 18th ordinary session of the AU’s Assembly in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa January 30, 2012.

Increasing the level of trade within the continent “is of particular importance,” he said.

This year’s session was focused on boosting intra-African trade.

According to the report Mr Ping welcomed an arrangement between the East African Community (EAC), the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) to form a free trade area.

And therefore called on the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the Arab Maghreb Union (AMU) to emulate the concept.

By Ekow Quandzie/

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