Regional Trade Agreements - Rwanda
5. AfCFTA (trade agreement) 2018
- The African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), signed by 44 African countries in Kigali, Rwanda, in March 2018, is meant to create a tariff-free continent that can grow local businesses, boost intra-African trade.
- Agreement Establishing a Tripartite Free Trade Area among the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, the East African Community and the Southern African Development Community 10 June 2015
Access to foreign markets and the consequent sustained economic growth, have led to the development of productive capacities, more employment opportunities, and sustainable livelihoods.
Gender issues need to be mainstreamed in trade policies, and subsequently, trade issues need to be factored into development policies.
What was missing in Rwanda was an assessment of the effects of trade liberalization and trade agreements on women as a discrete sector of the population.
Such an assessment was crucial to making trade an instrument for development in the country. It has helped in better understanding the specific challenges and opportunities that women face as a result of market liberalization.
This has paved way for the design and implementation of complementary policies aimed at maximizing opportunities for women and facilitating the transition of women to more competitive and better rewarded activities.
Women entrepreneurs are a significant force in Rwanda's private sector.
Women head 42% of enterprises. They comprise 58% of enterprises in the informal sector, which accounts for 30% of GDP.
Rwanda is signatory to several bilateral and multi-lateral trade agreements. The agreements present many opportunities for traders in Rwanda.