Executive Vice President of the ATLAS Network, Dr. Tom G. Palmer has urged Africa to hasten the process of trading among itself to ensure the continent’s economic development.
Speaking on Current Affairs Program, Spotlight on MX24 Television, the American Libertharian Author said even though the African Continental Free Trade Agreement is a good starting point for the Continent’s anticipated progress, the pace at which it is being implemented is too slow.
He says for Africans to maximize the benefits of the Agreement, there needs to be the immediate removal of some bureaucratic processes which he terms as colonial residues.
“Africans traded freely across the continent without customs duties and paperwork and certificates and so on. Authentic decolonization is getting rid of that ugly residue and instituting trade and that is why I am very enthusiastic about the African Continental Free Trade Area but I wish there could be much more urgency,” he told Adwoa Tenkoramaa on Spotlight.
Some of the restrictions, he says are in the “onerous” custom barriers on the continent that restricts the importation of goods across different nations in Africa.
“I think people who have experienced driving across Africa, the border checkpoints, the long delays, those things can be eliminated,” he added.
Meanwhile Dr. Palmer believes there has not been much change in leadership intention from the colonial and post-colonial eras.
Asked whether Africa has moved from the exploited point of view to chartering its own path, he stated, “I think in some cases, the post-colonial leaders just moved into the chairs of the colonists and continued with the process, looting for their own benefits and that of their families.”
Dr. Palmer was in Ghana for the first Prof. George Ayittey memorial lecture held in Accra in August 2023.
Watch the full interview on Spotlight below: