Aidoghie Paulinus, Abuja
Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, on Tuesday, said refusal of the two largest economies in Africa to sign the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) is surprising.
This is even as he said that the issue of migration was not a problem created by Africans, but a problem created by the Europeans.
The former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria spoke at the Tafawa Balewa House, Abuja, during the launch of the peer-review journal and inaugural lecture of the Association of Foreign Relations Professionals of Nigeria.
Emir Sanusi specifically said the refusal of Nigeria and South Africa to sign the AfCFTA was quite surprising.
“The Second point I would like to place on the table is the refusal of Nigeria and South Africa to sign the African Continental Free Trade Agreement.
“It is quite surprising that the two biggest economic in Africa withdrew from signing such economic agreement.
“I could not believe that we have signed GAT, already signed WTO, we have signed, we have trade relations with America, with China and we cannot have trade within Africa. Not having the two giant economies in Africa in it is serious,” Sanusi said.
The Emir further said 65 percent of trade in Europe was within Europe, saying that in Africa, “we only have 10 percent intra trade relations.”
“Why can’t we have the largest trade between Morocco and Nigeria or in the Sahel?
“Let us develop our infrastructure and connect Africa; let us make conscious efforts to increase the intra African trade,” Sanusi added.
Speaking earlier, Sanusi called for a review of world economic order to address the issue of migration.
Sanusi said if the issue of migration, in particular, of African descent must be addressed comprehensively, Nigeria and the rest of Africa should push for a review of the present economic world order.
Sanusi emphasised that contemporary foreign policies of nation’s can no longer be discussed in isolation of domestic policy.
He said that the current world order is skewed in favour of Europe and other developed countries, a situation which Emir Sanusi added made those countries attractive to citizens of less developed countries.
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Sanusi further expressed regret that Europe and the west through the trade liberalization policy, used African resources to develop their regions and yet, denying Africans the dividends of the fruit of their labours.
“We have a composition in the world whereby in the last three decade, we have been talking about removal of all barriers to the movement of capital.
“But I feel a little upset when I see African leaders going to Europe and sit down talking of how to stop the migration of labour which is not an African problem really. It is a European problem which was created partly by the world order,” Sanusi declared.
In his remarks, the President of the Association of Foreign Relations Professionals of Nigeria, Ambassador Gani Lawal, said the association intended to establish a credible think-thank for the government and people of Nigeria.
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Lawal further said the association was influenced by the mood that foreign relations as a subject has been subjected to permutations and conjectures by those with little knowledge of the subject.