Peter Lilley launched the All-Party-Parliamentary-Group on Trade Out of Poverty report on the Africa Free Trade Initiative last week. The report urges both the UK and African governments to give renewed priority to breaking down trade barriers both within Africa and between Africa and OECD countries.
The report was chaired by Lord Stephen Green, former Trade Minister and Chairman of HSBC, and Mr Ali Mufuruki, Chairman of Trademark East Africa. The report examined evidence from leading African and British business and trade experts.
Peter said: “It is good that emphasis be given to aid and to debt relief, but not enough emphasis has been given to the third leg of the stool, which is trade. In the long run, developing countries can only leave poverty behind through trade and economic development.”
Peter added: “The team sensibly extended their Inquiry to consider the potential implications of Brexit – both positive and negative. They emphasise that Britain should start preparing immediately to prevent disruption of African trade with the UK and take the opportunity to make our trade policy towards Africa as pro-development as possible; incorporating the best elements of EU, US, Canadian and other practices. Hopefully this could become a model for other OECD countries to follow – the model Trade Out of Poverty has long advocated.