Trading under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is about to begin in just a week’s time. While the Covid-19 crisis has undoubtedly complicated the picture, the East Africa region is actually well-placed to benefit from the AfCFTA. There are strong reasons for optimism. As a study published jointly by Economic Commission for Africa and Trademark East Africa in March this year shows, the potential gains for East Africa are large — under very conservative assumptions, we calculate for East Africa that the elimination of tariffs alone on intra-African trade will lead to net welfare gains of about $1 billion US dollars, $1.8 billion in additional intra-African exports, and the creation of an additional two million jobs. Add in accompanying measures to reduce non-tariff barriers and additional trade facilitation, and the final benefits are likely to be much larger. Read More.