AFRICA – Heads of Chambers of Commerce in Africa and Brazil have come together to create a new chamber of commerce to boost trade relations between the two regions.

The chamber to be known as the African-Brazilian Chamber of Commerce was officially launched in October this year in Brazil in a colorful event officiated by Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro. 

The agreement was signed by Chair of the Union of African Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Agriculture, and Professions (UACCIAP) Ibrahim Mahmoud al-Araby and Chairperson of the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce (ABCC) Rubens Hannun.

Araby noted that the new chamber will benefit from the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) whose purchasing power is $1.4 trillion, and Egypt-Mercosur Preferential Free Trade Agreement.

Araby who also represented Egypt called for joint manufacturing on Egyptian soil for foreign companies to benefit from the free trade agreements Egypt is part of, and that include 2.7 billion consumers.

On his part, Rubens Hannun highlighted that investors can take advantage of the various opportunities offered by Egypt in the SCzone (Suez Canal Zone) one, new cities, 1.5 Million Feddans Project for Land Reclamation, manufacturing, trade, and logistics.

Hannun added that new chamber will make room for boosting relations between Egypt and Brazil, and between Mercosur countries and Africa.

Brazil and Africa have a combined population of 1.5 billion people which is nearly 5 times the population size of the United States.

Combined, the two markets also make the largest market, larger than China or India which have a population of 1.4 billion and 1.3 billion people respectively.

The new trade pact is milestone in the relationship between Brazil and Africa which plummeted after rising to the peak in 2008.

Official figures show that Brazilian exports to African countries totaled US$7.94 billion in 2018, 26.16% more than in the same period of 2017.

Brazilian imports from African countries grew by 16.01% in the first 10 months of the year, to US$4.739 billion, with the balance favorable to Brazil by US$3.201 billion.

Brazilian official figures showed that Egypt is still the main destination for exports to Africa, ahead of Nigeria, while for imports the main source is Algeria, followed by Nigeria.

The pact is thus expected to continue deepening this trade relations and create more business opportunities for enterprises in both Brazil and Africa.

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