El Sisi arrives in Niger, gets Egypt’s talking heads talking
President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s visit to Niger was the talk of the town on the airwaves last night. El Sisi is set to chair the African Union’s extraordinary summit, which will take place later today, to launch the operational phase of the African Continental Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).
The agreement is “the beginning of a new era for Africa, and marks a milestone in the continent’s development,” the vice president of the Egyptian Council for African Affairs Salah Halima told Al Hayah Al Youm’s Lobna Assal (watch, runtime: 2:47).
Hona Al Asema’s Reham Ibrahim focused on the technicalities of the agreement. AfCFTA aims to make doing business on the continent easier and encourages African countries to trade among each other, while addressing issues that stifle intra-African trade such as high transport costs and cumbersome customs, among others. The agreement also aims to increase the volume of intra-African trade from 17% to 60% by 2022 (watch, runtime: 7:16).