Monday, 27 October 2008

The natural integration of African economies

The leaders of three trading African blocs have agreed on a mutual free trade zone last Wednesday in Kampala. They have also agreed to work towards further economic integration in the near future.

The integration is a natural outcome of Africa's development. As incomes rise, the demand for goods beyond subsistence production rises, and regional production offers lower travel costs than more distant production. Sufficiently large demand encourages international specialisation and consequent lowered costs. More stability in politics decreases the economically hazardous effects of international conflict. Trade integration gives increased weight in negotiations at world trade bodies.

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