ADDIS ABABA, Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- Six more AU member states are expected to deposit ratifications of the African Continental Free trade Area (AfCFTA) with the African Union (AU), a senior AU official said on Thursday.
The coming moves by the six countries will raise the number of ratifications to 17, and only five more ratifications are needed for the AfCFTA to come into force, the AU Commissioner for Trade and Industry, Albert Muchanga, told a press conference at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa.
Eleven countries, including, Kenya, Ghana, Rwanda, Niger, Chad, Eswatini (Swaziland), Guinea, Cote d'Ivoire, Uganda, Mali, and Namibia have already deposited their instruments of ratifications, while six more namely, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Congo, Togo, Mauritania, and Senegal are expected to deposit it by around the AU summit being held from Feb. 7 to 11, according to the Commissioner.
The agreement establishing the AfCFTA was opened for signature in Rwanda's Kigali on March 21, 2018, and 49 of the 55 AU member states have signed it so far.
"We expect two more signatures during this summit which will leave only four countries yet to sign," the AU Commissioner noted.