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Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Swaziland to increase intra-COMESA trade by US$1.9 billion

This was said by Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade Gideon Dlamini.The minister said products identified for potential export growth in Swaziland include milk, cream, fruits, nuts and other edible parts of plants, concentrates, textiles, wooden furniture and other wooden products.  “The COMESA market, which has a membership of 19 countries and with a potential to reach 20 (at the accession of South Sudan) has population of more than 370 million, which really  presents the opportunity for the country to increase its trade balance,” Dlamini said.He mention that Swaziland has trade relations with other regions and countries, which offer market access for local products at either lower duty or no duty at all. Dlamini went on to say there are also ongoing trade negotiations that Swaziland is participating in, including the Tripartite Free Trade Area, which will encompass 26 members of the African Union (from the COMESA, SADC and the East African Union). The Tripartite FTA which will span from Cape to Cairo will have a combined population of 625 million people and a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of (E13.2 trillion) US$1.2 trillion, will account for 58 per cent of the continent’s GDP.