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Title: Non-tariff measures (NTMs) and intra-African trade.
Authors: Sanjuán López, Ana Isabel
Gracia de Rentería, Pilar
Ferrer Pérez, Hugo
Philippidis, George
Ferrari, E.
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: European Commission, Joint Research Centre
Series/Report no.: JRC Technical reports
Abstract: Recently, African countries signed the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) to provide a single continental market for goods and services with free movement of people and investments and to accelerate intra-Africa trade. African countries recognised the significance of non-tariff measures (NTMs) in achieving the AfCFTA objectives and adopted an Annex to the agreement specifically dedicated to eliminating NTMs, i.e., all those policy measures other than ordinary customs tariffs that can have an effect on trade. Although NTMs will be crucial to the success of AfCFTA, a proper estimation of the expected trade cost reductions associated with NTM eliminations on intra-African trade is lacking. This study examines the impact of NTMs on intra-African trade by exhaustively reviewing databases of previous ad-valorem equivalent (AVE) estimates of NTMs applied by African countries in agri-food products and by providing estimates of NTM trade impacts for sectors and regions of special relevance. The report finds a systematic trade-restricting effect arising from the application of both technical and non-technical measures with a tendency for the latter to be more trade-restrictive. It also finds remarkable deviations in estimated AVEs for Africa from the overall means in the sample of countries. Finally, the estimates highlight that the main hotspots for NTMs in intra-African trade would be in sectors like rice and sugar, while the main policy actions need to address non-technical measures
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