Somalia Government delegation meets the COMESA Bureau of Council
The final negotiations towards the admission of the State of Somalia to COMESA concluded Wednesday, May 16, 2018 at the COMESA Secretariat in Lusaka with the review of a draft Agreement on the country’s accession to the COMESA Treaty.
Representatives of the COMESA Bureau of the Council of Ministers led by the Secretary General at the Ministry of Trade and Consumption of Madagascar, Mrs. Rafidy Josielle, led the negotiations. Somalia delegation was led by Mr. Ahmed Elmi Muhumud, Adviser to the Minister of Commerce and Industry.
The negotiations came ahead of the forthcoming 20th COMESA Summit whereby Somalia and Tunisia are set to join the regional bloc, having fulfilled the terms and conditions of accession to the COMESA Treaty.
Assistant Secretary General Dr Kipyego Cheluget and the Director of Legal Affairs Mr. Brian Chigawa as well as other COMESA senior officials assisted the two parties in the negotiations.
With the entry of Somalia and Tunisia, membership to the regional bloc will rise from 19 to 21 thus making COMESA, which is the largest regional economic community in Africa, even larger.
Somalia was formerly a full member of the Preferential Trade Area for Eastern and Southern Africa (PTA), the predecessor of COMESA, but failed to make the transition due to lack of government following a long civil war.
Upon admission, the new member States will be bound by the provisions of the Treaty. Within six months of admission, they shall deposit the instrument of acceptance with the Secretary General of COMESA together with an instrument of accession. This will mark the full admission to membership.