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2015 | OriginalPaper | Chapter

Regional Economic Communities

Author: Jacqueline Chimhanzi

Published in: Africans Investing in Africa

Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan UK

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There is, arguably, no greater topical issue in Africa than that of regional integration — a concept whose time has definitely come but whose operationalisation is still in the making and upon which Africa’s massive unrealised potential lies. Central to the importance of Regional Economic Communities (RECs) is their cross-cutting nature that transcends virtually all economic activity and sectors — from manufacturing, energy, infrastructure and financial services to tourism — underpinned by a very simple rationale — that there is strength in numbers. Given the transformative potential of regional integration, the integration discourse is actually best located in the broader context of development and economic transformation — beyond merely ‘fixing borders’ as an end in itself. Marcelo Giugale, the World Bank’s Africa Director for Poverty Reduction and Economic Management, aptly expressed it as follows: ‘The final prize is clear: … Africans trad[ing] goods and services with each other. Few contributions carry more development power than that’.1

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Metadata
Title
Regional Economic Communities
Author
Jacqueline Chimhanzi
Copyright Year
2015
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137542809_4

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