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Business News of Thursday, 13 January 2022


Coronavirus: Induced closure of land borders to impact continental trade - Ofosu-Dorte

David Ofosu-Dorte, Senior Partner at AB and David Africa David Ofosu-Dorte, Senior Partner at AB and David Africa

Land borders in West Africa closed for almost two years

Trade facilitation impacted by COVID-19 pandemic

Reopening land borders could boost continental trade, Ofosu-Dorte

David Ofosu-Dorte, Senior Partner at law advisory firm, AB and David Africa, has expressed worry that a prolonged closure of the land borders due to the COVID-19 pandemic will impact continental trade activity.

According to him, a resolution must quickly be found to reopen all land borders to avert the incurrence of more losses from the trading community and businesses.

Speaking on Citi TV’s Point of View program, Ofosu-Dorte believes that the reopening of all land borders will ensure that the trading community does not lose out to competitive free trade across the world.

“There is one thing we need to talk about– the impact of the pandemic. A lot of countries have their borders closed. There is no free trade and free movement because borders are closed," he stressed.

"...I am one of the advocates that the borders must be opened. After all, we have opened the airports. I am not talking about only Ghana but across Africa. These are things we must look at, and I think that it will pick up when businesses drive it. It is an ECOWAS issue across the rest of Africa,” he explained.

The private legal practitioner recommended that land borders ought to be opened in order not to derail benefits that could be derived from the Africa Continental Free Trade Area.

In 2021, ECOWAS leaders met a number of times to find workable solutions to address cross-border trade, trade facilitation and transportation in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Following the onset of the pandemic, there have been interruptions in the free movement of goods and persons over the last two years as a result of pandemic-induced closures and restrictions on trade.