News & Analysis: Policy coordination

Africa free-trade vision clouded by virus and pace of talks

“AfCFTA was supposed to take operational effect on Wednesday, July 1, but the timeline has slipped, under the complications caused by the COVID-19 outbreak but also the slow pace of negotiations themselves.”

via The East African

Crafting a framework for Africa’s COVID-19 vaccine access

“Drastic measures to contain the spread of COVID-19, such as strict lockdowns, are not sustainable on many parts of the African continent because of crowded living conditions and the need to keep economies afloat. That’s why an effective vaccine is one of the best chances African countries have to return to normalcy, experts said this week.”

via Devex

Africa needs its own ‘repo’ market

“Many African countries face a vicious cycle: lack of market access due to rising spreads at a time when they need it most and consequently weaker investment and growth potential — in some cases the ugly spectre of downgrades, defaults and debt restructuring may follow. An SPV funded by a major central bank could help break this pernicious pattern and create a virtuous circle for countries with sustainable macroeconomic fundamentals.”

via Financial Times

How the West gets the WHO and Tedros wrong

“Western failings and US-China’s tensions led to unfair accusations against the global health body and its Ethiopian boss, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.”

via Ethiopia Insight

A ‘Made in Africa’ response to COVID-19 must address economic nationalism

“The COVID-19 pandemic has renewed calls for African states to prioritise both domestic production and regional integration. East Africa’s experience over the last decade suggests that tensions exist between these ambitions.”

via Africa at LSE

Africa needs better economic integration, now more than ever

“While an AfCFTA delay still seems likely if only for practical logistical reasons, people familiar with the discussions say ministers are still negotiating and hoping for a compromise to be agreed to enable a multi-part implementation to start this year.”

via Quartz Africa

UN Secretary-General: ‘Global solidarity with Africa is an imperative’

“As COVID-19 spreads across the continent, Africa has responded swiftly to the pandemic, and as of now reported cases are lower than feared. Even so, much hangs in the balance.”

via UN News

Pandemics know no borders: In Africa, regional collaboration is key to fighting COVID-19

“Many African countries are all too familiar with the social and economic upheaval posed by outbreaks of infectious diseases. Recent experiences with Ebola are fresh in peoples’ minds across West and Central Africa, as are those with TB and HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa. As a result, African countries understand the need for regional coordination in overcoming public health challenges.”

via World Bank Blogs

The Pandemic and its Aftermath: The Role of Trade Policy

“Trade has been put under severe strain for some years, starting with the Great Recession of 2009, rising geopolitical tensions among major powers, and now the COVID-19 crisis. The last of these could reduce global trade flows in 2020 by as much as a massive 25 per cent or more.”

via Trade Law Centre

COVID-19 and Export Restrictions: The Limits of International Trade Law and Lessons for the AfCFTA

“The COVID-19 crisis has exposed the deep and systemic deficiencies of the global economic regulatory system and associated national vulnerabilities at a time of great
distress.”

via UNECA