From Kenneth Udeh, Abuja

The Africa Union (AU), the 54-member continental body, has been identified as having a pivotal role to play in the consolidation and deepening of trade and investment flow between Korea and Africa.

The revelation was made by the Africa Korea Economic Development Association (AKEDA) which expressed confidence that it also can ensure the sustainability of resolutions and commitments of the Korea Africa Summit 2024.

The organisation has been advocating for enhanced trade relations and investment between both countries and canvassed this position in its pre-summit assessment contained in a press release signed by the chairman, Yuccee Uwah in Abuja on Tuesday, May 21, 2024.

The group noted that the AU has a significant role to play in sustaining the momentum raised by the ongoing partnership between Korea and Africa, which will culminate in the first Korea Africa Summit 2024.

The statement read:

“This is a historic opportunity for Korea and Africa to nurture and consolidate sustainable partnership based on a shared vision for a prosperous Africa which thrives on industrialisation, technology, and investment that mutually benefits both Africa and Korea.

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“The African Union as the lead continental organisation that unites 54 member-nations with a history of focused leadership, capacity, and capability to rally Africa as one indivisible unit, it has a huge role to play in ensuring that the resolutions and commitments by Korea Africa Summit are implemented by the parties through a continental moderated framework.

“AKEDA believes that through this will further boost trade and investment, industrialisation, and inclusive development across the continent. AU in our view, needs to facilitate a continuous inflow of investment and capital from Korea to Africa and Africa’s investment in Korea through symbiotic trade and investment corridors that benefit all parties.

“AU leveraging its convening power needs to continuously negotiate with Korea on behalf of Africa on trade and investment with a view to harmonize trade regulations and requirements including tariffs, taxes, and related matters.

“The African Union is expected to lead its member states to the first Korea Africa Summit scheduled for June 4 to 5 2024 in Seoul, Korea, with several multilateral agencies, regional development banks, and the international community also expected to participate.

“The summit is being organized by the government of Korea as part of its ongoing effort to nurture evolving strategic engagement and partnership with Africa as a key ally as both seek new frontiers for trade and investment, sustainable development, and shared prosperity.

“The momentum needs to be maintained as Korea and Africa prepare for a great future based on a shared vision of advancing shared prosperity and common good for its citizens.

AKEDA stated that Korea has over 60 years of experience growing its economy from the bootstrap to become an industrialized medium power, which it said has given the country an edge to provide leadership in manufacturing, technology, maritime, infrastructure, and agriculture, among others.

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