Souleymane Coulibaly, Woubet Kassa, and Albert G. Zeufack’s edited book addresses the challenges currently facing Africa in international trade. As the subtitle indicates, the aim of this publication is to propose a new strategy to boost Africa’s market access within the current global environment. This new strategic shift is tackled from three main angles. First, the authors analyse the impact of trade agreements (multilateral, regional, and unilateral) on Africa’s position in global trade and suggest ways in which these partnerships could be improved in a way that benefit Africa’s economies. Part I focuses on unilateral trade preference schemes devised by developed countries to provide non-reciprocal market access to goods originating in Africa. Two emblematic schemes are tackled here, viz the United States AGOA and the European Union Everything but Arms (EBA) programmes. Secondly, the book proposes going beyond ‘traditional’ partners and seek to secure access in new frontier markets in Asia where they have a lot to learn in terms of insertion in the global value chains (GVCs). In this regard, Part II provides insights on Africa trade relations with (East and South) Asia. As exports to Asia remain highly concentrated in natural resources, one also learns for instance that, contrary to some assumptions, China is not always the primary trading partner of individual African countries. Others players such as India and Pakistan are equally dominant (pp. 187-88). Part II therefore proposes to build on these achievements to strengthen trade ties with Asia. Thirdly, the book takes stock of the small size of African economies and suggests that they would be better off deepening regional integration. In this quest for a stronger and deeper economic integration, the largest middle-income AfCFTA State Parties are exhorted to take the lead.
Save as: Regis Y. Simo, "Book Review: Africa in the New Trade Environment: Market Access in Troubled Times. Edited by Coulibaly Souleymane; Kassa Woubet; & Zeufack Albert G. World Bank Group, 2022. Pp. 361", Volume 3, AfJIEL (2022), 230-238.