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Summit on Building Africa’s Trade Resilience Beyond COVID-19

Convened by Africa Investor (Ai), the online summit brought together the heads of global trade organisations and recognised the importance of pioneering partnerships and collaboration with the private sector and international organisations in restoring trade confidence and flows in the fight against COVID-19, and in building trade resilience in anticipation of future pandemics. The Summit was chaired by Hubert Danso, CEO and Chairman of Ai and Chairman of the African Union Continental Business Network. The virtual meeting drew in guests such as Wamkele Mene, Secretary General of the African Continental Free Trade Area Secretariat; John Denton, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce; Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of World Customs Organization; Yonov Frederick Agah, Deputy Director-General of the World Trade Organization; Vinco David, Secretary General of Berne Union and Hennie Heymans, CEO of DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa. The importance of accelerating the adoption of African eTrade, Paperless Customs and RegTech innovation also featured highly on the agenda. The Summit, which took place on 30 April, highlighted the urgent need for harmonised regulation to help the African private sector – in particular SME’s – to digitise their businesses, to be able to trade and compete in the ‘Post COVID-19 Contactless Economy’, where ‘Trade and Customs Distancing’ will be the new normal.