Women and Youth:
The Engine of AfCFTA Trade in Africa
Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre – JNICC
Dar Es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania
H.E. Samia Suluhu HassanPresident of the United Republic of Tanzania
Her Excellency Samia Suluhu Hassan is the sixth President of the United Republic of Tanzania and Chairmanship of the Ruling Party, Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM). She was sworn in on 19th March 2021 following the untimely death of His Excellency President Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli.
Her Excellency is the first woman to hold this key position in the history of the United Republic of Tanzania and the first Vice President in Tanzania and East Africa to ascend to presidency. Prior to assuming the Presidency she was the fourth Vice President of the United Republic of Tanzania after the re-introduction of the multiparty system in 1992.
Among the initiatives undertaken were: Overseeing the creation and set up of women economic platforms countrywide that linked women’s small and medium enterprises to cross-border markets, soft loans and entrepreneurial skills; and liaised with the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and the Children in preparing and launching the campaign to increase accountability in reducing maternal and new- born deaths locally known as ‘Jiongeze tuwavushe Salama’.
H.E. Wamkele MeneSecretary-General of The AfCFTA Secretariat
H.E. Wamkele Mene was elected by the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of States & Government of the African Union to the position of Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat.
Prior to being elected Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, H.E. Mene served as Chief Director: Africa Economic Relations at the Department of Trade & Industry of South Africa. He also acted as Chief Trade Negotiator for South Africa in the AfCFTA and Tripartite FTA negotiations. During his tenure as Chief Negotiator, South Africa ratified the AfCFTA and Tripartite FTA agreements.
H.E. Mene has also written and lectured internationally in the areas of international trade law, international investment law and international business law. He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Law) degree from Rhodes University in South Africa and a Master of Arts in International Studies & Diplomacy (with specialisation in International Economics) from the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), University of London and an LL.M. (Master of Laws) in Banking Law & Financial Regulation from the Law Department of the London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE).
In 2020, H.E. Mene received an award as one of the top 100 most influential people of African descent in support of the United Nations International Decade of African Descent (2015-2024).