Africa’s Exports See Hit $1 Trillion by 2035 – StanChart Report


A report by financial institution Standard Chartered Plc forecasts that Africa’s total exports will nearly reach $952 billion by 2035, with the potential for further expansion of up to 29% due to the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA). Once fully implemented, AfCFTA is expected to boost trade by 3% annually until 2035.

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The report, titled ‘Future of Trade: Africa,’ was unveiled during the 2023 World Bank Group – IMF Annual Meetings in Marrakesh, Morocco. According to Standard Chartered, rising regional trade and improved connectivity will create high-growth corridors both within Africa and beyond. Intra-Africa trade is projected to reach $140 billion by 2035, accounting for 15% of Africa’s total exports.

The report also identifies specific growth corridors, with the East Africa-South Asia corridor expected to be the fastest-growing at 7.1% annually through 2035. Additionally, the Middle East-North Africa and the Middle East-East Africa corridors are predicted to have substantial trade volumes, potentially reaching almost $200 billion by 2035.

Standard Chartered believes that the AfCFTA could help address challenges related to compliance costs and administration. By implementing common rules of origin, granting preferential trade access to all 54 AfCFTA member states, the agreement could lead to more efficient intra-African trade. However, the report notes that Africa still faces obstacles, including complex trade rules, underdeveloped transportation infrastructure, and issues with trade facilitation and access to capital. The report suggests that around 90% of respondents believe the AfCFTA can help overcome these challenges.

The report also highlights the role of digitalization in boosting intra-Africa trade. It suggests that implementing digital supply chain financing solutions could unlock $34 billion of export value in five key African markets by 2035.

Gbenga Samson
Gbenga Samson
Samson Gbenga Salau [Editorial Board Adviser] Gbenga Samuel Salau is a professional journalist with over 17 years experience in journalism, he is a graduate of Communication and Language Arts, University of Ibadan. On completion of his youth service, he joined The Guardian as a freelance journalist and was later absorbed as a staff. While in the University, he was a campus journalist reporting for the Independence Hall and Faculty of Arts Press Clubs. As a campus journalist, he won the following awards; Independence Hall Press Best News writer; University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best News Reporter/Writer; First Runner-up, Reuben Abati Award for Investigative Journalism; Association of Faculty of Arts Students’ Press Best Reporter; University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best Political Writer; Winner, Reuben Abati Award for Investigative Journalism, and University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best Interviewer. He served the Association of Communication and Language Arts Students, as the Public Relation Officer, the same year he was appointed the News Editor of the Association of Faculty of Arts Students Press. The following session, he was made the General Editor, and a member of the 13-man University of Ibadan Students’ Union Transition Committee. As a reporter in The Guardian, in 2014, he won the Promasidor Quill Award Best Report on Nutrition and DAME Business Reporting category. In the 2015 edition of the Promasidor Quill Award, he won the best Report on Nutrition and Brand Advocate Categories, while in 2016, he won the NMMA Print Journalist of the Year, first runner-up Golden Pen Reporter of the Year and SERAs CSR Awards. Gbenga Salau loves traveling, reading, and listening to songs with good lyrics no matter the genre.

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