Member States of the African Union have commended His Majesty King Mswati III and the Kingdom of Eswatini for its pioneering role in hosting the AeTrade Group and the impressive progress made despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
This was during the AU Industrialisation and Economic Diversification Summit, which was held in Niger.
Prime Minister, Cleopas Dlamini, represented the king at the summit.
His Majesty is chairperson of the African Electronic Trade (AeTrade) Group.
During a media briefing upon his arrival at KMIII International Airport yesterday, the prime minister stated that the kingdom was commended for making good strides in chairing the committee.
The prime minister chaired the AeTrade Group’s Presidential Advisory Council, where the company (AeTrade) signed a memorandum of understanding with the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), which was represented by the Secretary General, Wamkele Mene.
Dlamini said the heads of State deliberated intensively on trade issues, which currently stand as barriers that prevented free trade, among member States.
The heads of State are said to have engaged in an Extraordinary Summit as part of the Africa Industrialisation Week.
The prime minister said the heads of State focused on speeding up production capabilities, speeding up the rate of innovation and increasing welfare gains.
They echoed the need for Africa to move up the value chains and export finished products by accelerating the process of industrialisation of the AfCFTA.
The summit adopted a declaration that confirmed renewed commitment towards industrialisation and decisions to support the objective.
“The heads of State and governments took note of the conclusion of phase II negotiations on the two Protocols on Competition Policy and Investments Policy and directed the AfCFTA secretariat to finalise work on the intellectual property rights protocol,” said the prime minister.
Dlamini said on the last part, the inaugural meeting of the Presidential Advisory Council of the AeTrade Group took place under the chairmanship of His Majesty, who was commended for his pioneering role in the council.
The meeting noted progress in the setting up of the continental offices in Rwanda and the regional office in Eswatini and other countries, as well as the launch of a trading platform known as Sokuku, where actual trade had begun.