By Omodele Adigun
Stanbic IBTC Bank Plc, a subsidiary of Standard Bank Group, has urged Nigerian investors and business owners to harness and maximise the business opportunities that are inherent in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement. This will help boost intra-Africa trade beyond the current level of 17 per cent as well as promote industrialisation and the economic growth of the continent.
Wole Adeniyi, Chief Executiveof the bank, made the call at the AfCFTA webinar, organised by Stanbic IBTC themed: “AfCFTA State of Play: Understanding Potential and Maximising Opportunities for the Customer.”
Adeniyi explained that multiple studies have shown that the increase in trade has a direct impact on reducing unemployment and poverty in societies, and noted that the AfCFTA agreement presents numerous trade opportunities that are both exciting and promising not just for the continent but specifically for the Nigerian market.
He emphasised Stanbic IBTC’s readiness to leverage on the trade opportunities of the AfCFTA agreement to unlock business opportunities for its clients in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector as well as its corporate clients.
While delivering his keynote address on the theme of the event, the guest speaker, Bamidele Ayemibo, lead consultant at 3T Impex Trade Academy, pointed out that with the implementation of the AfCFTA agreement, Africa has the opportunity of becoming the largest market in the world with a population of 1.2 billion people and a combined GDP of $3.4 trillion.