Building capacity to help Africa trade better

Key decisions of the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union


Key decisions of the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union

Key decisions of the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union
Photo credit: GCIS

Highlighted decisions adopted in Addis Ababa, January 2019

Decision on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA)


  • Endorsed the recommendations of African Union Ministers of Trade on: Template on Tariff Liberalization which will be used by Member States in preparing the AfCFTA Schedules of Tariff Concessions; and the designation of Sensitive Products and Exclusion List on the basis of the following criteria: food security, national security, fiscal revenue, livelihood and industrialization.

  • Decided that Member States wishing to enter into partnerships with third parties should inform the Assembly with assurance that those efforts will not undermine the African Union vision of creating one African market

  • Requested the African Union Commission, with the assistance of technical partners, to undertake an assessment of the requirements for the establishment of a future common market including steps to be taken as well as their implications and challenges, for consideration by the African Union Ministers of Trade.

  • Requested the African Union Ministers responsible for trade to: submit the Schedules of Tariff Concessions, and Schedules of Specific Commitments on Trade in Services in line with agreed modalities to the July 2019 and January 2020 Sessions of the Assembly, respectively, for adoption; and conclude the negotiations on Investment, Competition Policy and Intellectual Property Rights, and submit the draft legal texts to the January 2021 Session of the Assembly for adoption through the Specialised Technical Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs.

On the institutional reform of the African Union


  • Delegated to the Executive Council its authority to consider and approve the Statute and Rules of Procedure of the Governance Structures of the African Union Development Agency, AUDA/NEPAD, during its 35th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council in Niamey, Niger, June/July 2019

On Post-2020 Partnership with the European Union


  • Recalled the decision which stressed the need to ensure that Africa speaks with one voice in the various platforms of partnership with the EU, and requested the Commission to ensure cohesion between the Post-Cotonou Agreement and the Post-2020 Continent-to-Continent Partnership, so that continental priorities, as articulated in Agenda 2063 and other related instruments, are consistently reflected in both tracks.

On the state of governance in Africa


  • Welcomed the Africa Governance Report developed by the APRM and urged the Member States to consider the recommendations contained in the Report with a view to enhancing good governance and sharing best practices at both country and continental levels

  • Urged the Member States to develop national governance reports as a self-assessment tool for promoting good governance in line with the recommendations of the Report

On the Report of the 28th Summit of the Forum of the African Peer Review Mechanism


  • Decided that the African peer Review Mechanism (APRM) shall be an Organ of the Africa Union in line with Article 5(2) of the Constitutive Act;

  • Welcomed the peer review Reports of Cote d’Ivoire and Mozambique and encouraged both countries to take into account observations of Member States during the presentation of the review reports to the APR Forum as well as the recommendations contained in reports in the development and implementation of their National Programme of Action, as a necessary step in furthering the goal of the APRM

On the Katowice Climate Conference (UNFCCC COP 24) and Africa’s engagements at the Global Climate Change Conference at COP25/CMP15


  • Urged parties to the Paris Agreement to recognize the special circumstances and needs of African countries, in line with the relevant and previous decisions adopted by the Conference of the Parties, and called upon the incoming presidency of the Conference of the Parties to continue with the consultations, with a view to reaching a decision in that regard by the twenty-fifth session of the Conference of the Parties, and requested the AGN to continue pursuing the issue

  • Urged developed countries to continue to scale up mobilized climate finance towards achieving the 2020 finance goal through private and public funds to deliver on the US$100 billion annually, building on the needs of developing countries and enhancing the country ownership of developing countries, and further enhance the provisions of predictable and sustainable finance building on the floor of the 100 billion USD annually

  • Encouraged African countries to ratify the Kigali Amendment of the Montreal protocol as a vehicle to strengthen efforts to tackle climate change.

On Financing the Union


Mandated the Commission to do the following:

  • Provide technical support to Member States in accelerating the implementation of the 0.2% levy;

  • Facilitate the involvement of the Committee of Fifteen Finance Ministers (F15) in the consideration of the annual audit report of the Union;

  • Facilitate a retreat of the F15 to assess mechanisms on its working methods as well as consider modalities on how it can accelerate the implementation of decisions on Financing of the Union;

  • Strengthen the Secretariat of the Financing of the Union with a view of providing adequate support to the F15 and Member States.

The Assembly also adopted a number of declarations, resolutions and one motion. Details of these as well as the full decisions will be available soon.


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