RABAT, March 21 (Xinhua) -- The launching of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is a critical step towards the achievement of multifaceted development in Africa, the Moroccan King Mohammed VI said on Wednesday.
At the Extraordinary Summit of the African Union (AU) on AfCFTA in Rwanda's capital Kigali, Prime Minister Saad Eddine El Othmani read the speech of the king, which deemed the move as "an initiative by Africa, for Africa."
El Othmani signed also the agreement along with representatives of over 40 African countries.
He said "this is a defining moment in history," affirming "determination to build an Africa for the future," Morocco's official MAP news agency reported.
This initiative brings in new prospects, practices and solidarity mechanisms, he stressed, noting that a continental free trade area stimulates capacities, enhances knowledge and insight and fulfils the desire and ambition of our young people to build a strong, integrated Africa.
"Thanks to the enthusiasm and dynamism which characterized the rounds of negotiation, we have been able to consider free trade in 90 percent of goods," he said.
The AfCFTA is a flagship project of Agenda 2063, the African Union's long-term vision for an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa.