The Continental Free Trade Agreement and Industrialisation

  • Date: Wednesday, 17 October 2018
  • Time: 10.30-13.00
  • Venue: TIPS Boardroom, 234 Lange St, Nieuw Muckleneuk, Pretoria
  • Main Speakers: Carlos Lopes (UCT) Faizel Ismail (TIPS and UCT)
  • For enquiries or to register please contact:

10:30 - 10:45: Opening and Welcome

10:45 - 12:00: Presentations by

  • Carlos Lopes, UCT
  • Faizel Ismail, TIPS and UCT
12:00 - 12:30: Discussion

12:30: Lunch


The negotiations for the Continental Free Trade Agreement (CFTA) are underway. Among other things, this massive undertaking has the potential to establish a sizeable market for a range of manufactured products and in doing so support the industrialisation of African countries. Yet it holds many pitfalls that could undermine industrial capacity and contribute to deindustrialisation in those countries with existing capacity.
This Development Dialogue aims to discuss some of the challenges and issues for consideration in the negotiation of the CFTA and its alignment with Africa’s ambition of supporting industrialisation on the continent.


Carlos Lopes: Professor Lopes is a Bissau-Guinean development economist, who served as the eighth Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (2012-2016). He is a Professor at the Mandela School of Public Governance, UCT and Visiting Professor at Sciences Po, Paris. In 2017 he was a Visiting fellow at the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford. Lopes previously served the United Nations as Kofi Annan‘s Political Director, Head of Policy at UNDP, Director of the United Nations System Staff College and Executive Director of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). He is a Chatham House Associate Fellow and currently serves as the African Union High representative for negotiations with Europe.

Faizel Ismail: Dr Faizel Ismail is an Adjunct Professor at the UCT School of Economics and a TIPS Research Associate. He has previously been an advisor to the Department of Trade and Industry on International Trade and Special Envoy on the African Growth and Opportunity Act, and served as the Ambassador Permanent Representative of South Africa to the WTO (2010-2014).             

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