Published 1 March 2023
The adoption of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) has raised a lot of hope and enthusiasm for the take-off of African economies. Theoretically, it is a great step forward in stimulating intra-African trade and developing local industries by giving preference to African goods. Certainly, some feared the effects of such an agreement and lobbied their governments not to sign it, but globally almost everybody applauds its adoption. Yet despite this fervour, the implementation of the AfCFTA and so its expected effects might not be effective. Indeed, in the past, African States have concluded dozens of agreements that have been implemented either partially or not at all. Thus, this paper aims to assess whether the fate of the AfCFTA could be different from that of so many previous agreements. It does so by using prominent compliance theories. Then it applies these theories to the specific case of the AfCFTA in the African context. It appears that compliance in such a context will face many specific challenges, which are, however, not prohibitive.
This paper will be part of the second TDM Special Issue on "The African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA)". More information here www.transnational-dispute-management.com/news.asp?key=1809