Minister of Trade and Industry Joseph Mwanamvekha has said the Tripartite Free Trade Area (TFTA), which 26 African countries are launching today in Egypt, would help companies in Malawi find a bigger market for their goods and compete effectively on the global market.
Mwanamvekha said this in an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Monday in Sharma El Sheikh, Egypt on the sidelines of council meeting for ministers from Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa), Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc) and East African Community (EAC) in preparation for launch of the TFTA.
The TFTA among the three regional economic blocs will be launched at the Third Summit of the Tripartite Heads of State and Government in the Egyptian resort city of Sharm El Sheikh on June 10 2015.
President Peter Mutharika, who left the country yesterday through Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) will attend the meeting.
Mwanamvekha said the TFTA would ensure that manufacturing companies in Malawi improve on their produce and reach an enlarged market covering 26 countries with a combined population of 600 million people and a gross domestic product (GDP) of $ 1 trillion.
“Our companies need to improve on value addition because this tripartite FTA is also raising standards of production,” he said.
Mwanamvekha also said the TFTA would also help ease movement of goods and people within the area.
TFTA will help to harmonise policies in areas of common interest and address issues of multiple membership.