Back ground of the study
Regional trade integration contributes to economic growth and development either by trade creation or trade diversion. Economic development is an effort by policy intervention that aims economic and social wellbeing of the people that is perceived from changes in terms of trade, while economic growth is a rise in GDP, that is, an increase in the volumes of goods and services produced and exchanged. After 1970’s closed world economy has been opened their border for the sake of free trade and comparative advantage which resulted to a world trade increase since 1975-2000 in the global market (Keen, 2013). Africans slower and stagnant stages of development for the past five centuries started to follow the suite developed countries. Africans won independence in the 1950s and 1960s that gradually created the idea of regional economic cooperation due to pan African solidarity. In 1965 UNECA convened a meeting to consider proposals for regional economic integration for independent states of eastern and southern African nations. (COMESA website) Then through process Common Markets for Eastern and southern Africa (COMESA) officially established in 1994 with 19 member states. This period has been a time that most African countries took reforms to liberalizing trade by removing barriers to trade since. These countries agreed to co-operate and work together to exchange natural and human resources in forming large economic and trading units to overcome barriers to individual states and has a strategy to economic prosperity (Nwolise, 2010). In the developed economies regional integrations, for instance, in NAFTA and EU worked effectively and there was a considerable gain from trade while in Africa there are about 10 regional integration units in which none of them seems working effectively. COMESA as regional integration units have problems associated with backwardness, existence of high poverty level, lack of economic base, weak infrastructural development and communication, inability to use modern technology, the existence of global challenges, and lack of capacity to make decisions with regard to WTO membership, prevalence of war, internal conflicts and environmental issues. In line with removing barriers of trade reducing problems associated with individual member countries is a must. COMESA has a large market potential with a population of over 443 million people, GDP of over 360 million, annual import of around US$ 138.2 billion and export of US$ 114.8 billion that formed a major market place for both internal and external trading and have land area that covers about 12 million sq.km. According to Alemayehu and Haile, intra-African trade is not small compared to expectations. Moreover, much progress has been made since 2000 when 9 member countries reduced tariffs to 0%, but little has been made to integrate the remaining countries. The availability of this resource potential needs to be evaluated in terms of growth and development of individual countries.
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Anderson, U (2018). Comesa Institutions and Decision making Process. Afribary.com: Retrieved July 18, 2018, from http://dubz-by-dan.co.uk/works/comesa-institutions-and-decision-making-process
Ugwu, Anderson. "Comesa Institutions and Decision making Process" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 18 Jun. 2018, http://dubz-by-dan.co.uk/works/comesa-institutions-and-decision-making-process . Accessed 18 Jul. 2018.
Ugwu, Anderson. "Comesa Institutions and Decision making Process". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 18 Jun. 2018. Web. 18 Jul. 2018. < http://dubz-by-dan.co.uk/works/comesa-institutions-and-decision-making-process >.
Ugwu, Anderson. "Comesa Institutions and Decision making Process" Afribary.com (2018). Accessed July 18, 2018. http://dubz-by-dan.co.uk/works/comesa-institutions-and-decision-making-process