Market Intelligence
Agribusiness Equipment and Machinery Retail Trade Africa Sub-Saharan Africa Ghana Foreign Trade Regulations Customs and Boarder Measures African Continental Free Trade Area

Ghana AfCFTA Guided Trade Initiative Update

Starting in September 2022, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat launched its Guided Trade Initiative (GTI), which is part of its efforts to initiate commercially meaningful trade under the AfCFTA.  As part of the initiative, it selected seven countries to provisionally start trading goods under the AfCFTA on a pilot basis. Those countries were Rwanda, Cameroon, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Mauritius, and Tanzania.  The AfCFTA Secretariat chose these countries because their tariff offers on goods had been fully approved and officially published.

Since that time, the Secretariat has successfully assisted these countries to test AfCFTA trading documents and procedures on pre-selected shipments of goods among themselves. The GTI helped to guide these shipments through customs clearance, including reduced tariff treatment under the AfCFTA in the receiving AfCFTA countries.  Examples of the types of goods that were traded include: coffee, ceramic tiles, electric components, dried fruits, tea and processed meat. 

In 2023, the AfCFTA Secretariat broadened its outreach on GTI to expand the scope of coverage, both in terms of countries and products.  It announced that in 2024, an additional 24 African countries will now be covered by the GTI and start preferential trade under the AfCFTA. Those 24 countries are expected to include many of the following AfCFTA Parties.  

  • East Africa Region: Uganda;
  • Central Africa Region: the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Burundi, Gabon, the Republic of Congo, Chad, Central African Republic and Equatorial Guinea;
  • North Africa Region: Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco;
    Southern Africa Region: Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Lesotho and Eswatini; 
  • West Africa Region: Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo; and
    Island States: Cape Verde, Comoros, Madagascar and Seychelles.

The launch of preferential trade under AfCFTA by South Africa in January 2024 formed a particular milestone given its large market size.  As a result, traders in Algeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, and Tunisia are now qualified to trade with South Africa under the AfCFTA. 

Further the AfCFTA Secretariat is expanding the scope of products traded under the initiative to include: mushrooms, flowers, bio pesticides, powdered milk, fish oil, frozen tuna, mineral and chemical fertilizers, essential oils, packaged moringa, fortified maize porridge, honey, nut butters, fruit jams, tea, coffee, meat products, beverages, flour and maize meal, pasta, and fabric.

The production in GTI participating countries of these goods can benefit from tariff reductions under AfCFTA if they meet the product-specific rules of origin under the AfCFTA.  This includes production by U.S. companies in those countries.  

For more information about developments related to, and commercial opportunities arising from, the African Continental Free Trade Area, contact Commercial Service Ghana at or +233(0)30-274-1870.