The Extraordinary Meeting of the Council of Ministers kicked off in Libreville, Gabon from the 27th to the 28th of October. The agenda for the meeting is the consideration of outstanding issues from the 10th Meeting of the Council of Ministers which includes the Draft Schedules of Specific Commitments on Trade in Services, the Draft Protocol on Competition Policy, the Draft Protocol on Investment as well as Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). The Consideration of the Draft Agenda for the Extraordinary Session of Heads of State and Government on AfCFTA and the consideration of the Concept Note on the AU Theme of the Year 2023 – “Acceleration of AfCFTA Implementation” was also a main objective of the meeting.
In his address at the Opening Ceremony, H.E. Wamkele Mene stated that the consideration of the various protocols presented a unique opportunity to establish a legal foundation and a basis for establishing a common market which would enable Africa to respond to the shifting geopolitical landscape across the world and most importantly, ensure that 1.3 billion Africans see the benefit of the AfCFTA. He brought attention to the over-reliance on imports of grains from Russia and Ukraine which is causing a food insecurity crisis across the continent which needed to be urgently addressed.
A press briefing will be held on Friday, the 28th of October to share the outcomes of the meeting.