Devonomics

Devonomics

It is difficult to answer questions about how Nigeria can and should achieve sustainable economic, social and political growth. This column takes a look at well known development economic theories and applies them to the unique Nigerian context.

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The Continental Crossroad

Akinkunmi Akingbade

Akinkunmi Akingbade

Akin is a Freelance Consultant and Writer with a background in Development Economics. He previously worked at Ventures Africa.

"When will the African people unite?"

Musical maestro Majek Fashek posed this question in his legendary album, The Rainmaker. The narrative of a United Africa is founded on the belief that by coming together, the continent can solve overcome its many challenges as it speeds towards economic and social development. 

That journey looked to have gotten a little smoother in March of this year as 44 of the continent's 55 Heads of State gathered in Kigali to ratify the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement, which could create a free trade bloc and remove tariffs on 90 percent of products in the region. 

However, Nigeria and South Africa, two of Africa's largest economies, eschewed the agreement, failing to turn up for the event. President Buhari cancelled on the Sunday before the event, citing worries that Nigeria was not ready for the pact and arguing that the country could become a dumping ground for African and other foreign products. 

This was quite a turn as the President had initially supported the trade deal. Yet it was in line with his approach to major trade negotiations; in April, he rejected the Economic Partnership Agreement, a trade agreement between the European Union and 16 West African countries.

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