Joint OAU/ECA Progress Report on the Implementation of the Abuja Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community
1. After the entry into force of the Abuja Treaty on 12 May 1994, it became necessary to continue with the drafting of the Protocols to be annexed to the Treaty, submit the said Protocols for consideration and approval by the Permanent Steering Committee of the Organization of African Unity (OAU), prepare an abridged version of the Treaty as well as the draft rules of procedure of the Economic and Social Commission as provided in Article 15 of the Treaty and consider a new organizational structure grouping OAU and the Community. Furthermore, the General Secretariat organized a series of consultations with the secretariats of the regional economic communities.
I. STAGE OF PROTOCOLS
A. Draft Protocols already read by the Permanent Steering Committee
(a) First reading Languages
Draft Protocol on industry English/French
(b) Second reading
(i) Draft Protocol on the rules of origin of the products to be commercialized within the African Economic Community All(1)
(ii) Draft Protocol on customs cooperation within the African Economic Community All
(iii) Draft Protocol on relations between the African Economic Community and the regional economic communities All (N.B. Submitted to the twenty-sixth ordinary session of the Permanent Steering Committee; reading of the draft was deferred to the twenty-seventh session)
(c) Third reading
(i) Draft Protocol on transport and communications All
(ii) Draft Protocol on free movement and the right of residence and establishment All
B. Draft Protocols already prepared but not read by the Permanent Steering Committee
(a) Draft Protocol (revised) on industry All (N.B. Submitted to the twenty-sixth ordinary session of the of the PSC; consideration of the draft was deferred to the twenty-seventh session)
(b) Draft Protocol on science and technology English
(c) Draft Protocol on harmonization, quality control and measurement systems English/French/Portuguese
(d) Draft Protocol on the Solidarity, Development and Compensation Fund of the African Economic Community English/French
(e) Draft Protocol on the African Union for Compensation, Payments and Monetary Cooperation English/French
(f) Draft Protocol on transit trade and transit facilities within the Community English/French
(g) Draft Protocol on the removal and/or elimination of customs barriers for certain items intended for trading purposes within the Community English/French
(h) Draft Protocol on energy and natural resources French
(i) Draft Protocol on non-tariff barriers to be eliminated among member States English
(j) Draft Protocol on the simplification and harmonization of commercial formalities and documents English
(k) Draft Protocol on the Pan-African Parliament
(l) Draft Protocol on trade promotion
(m) Draft Protocol on food and agriculture
C. Draft Protocols not yet prepared
(a) Draft Protocol on the statutes of the Court of Justice
(b) Draft Protocol on environment
(c) Draft Protocol on the legal status of a community or multinational company
(d) Draft Protocol on education, training and culture
(e) Draft Protocol on human resources and social affairs
(f) Draft Protocol on health and population
(g) Draft Protocol on the general provisions regarding Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland
(h) Draft Protocol on the special provisions regarding least developed, land-locked, semi-land-locked and island countries
(i) Draft Protocol on relations between the Community and African continental organizations, African non-governmental organizations and associations
(j) Draft Protocol on relations between the Community and third parties and international organizations
(k) Draft Protocol on relations between member States and third parties and international organizations.
II. ABRIDGED VERSION OF THE TREATY
2. A volume of the Treaty, prepared in French, is being translated into the other OAU working languages. It would be proper for it to be translated into the various vernacular languages of the Member States.
III. DRAFT RULES OF PROCEDURE OF THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMISSION
3. This draft, also prepared in French, has been translated into the other OAU working languages and is currently being typed. It will be submitted for consideration and adoption to the first meeting of the Economic and Social Commission which, in conformity with resolution AHG/Res.235(XXXI) of the thirty-first Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government, should be convened by the Secretary-General as soon as possible and probably before the end of the current year.
IV. DRAFT ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE OAU/COMMUNITY SECRETARIAT
4. With the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the General Secretariat obtained a study from a consultant on the OAU/Community structure. On the basis of the study, the General Secretariat set-up a task force which prepared a draft organizational structure of the OAU/Community and circulated it to the various departments for appraisal.
5. The draft structure will be submitted to the next session of the OAU Ad hoc Committee on Structural Reform before being tabled before the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Matters.
V. CONSULTATIONS BETWEEN THE SECRETARIATS OF THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC
COMMUNITIES AND THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF OAU
6. After the entry into force of the Treaty establishing the African Economic Community which, under Article 6 of its provisions, accords a primary role of the regional economic communities, in the building of the pan-African Community, it became necessary and important for the General Secretariat, which is also the Secretariat of the Community, to engage in consultations with the secretariats of the regional economic communities in order to harmonize their positions on the practical ways and means of coordinating their activities geared towards continental integration.
7. Thus, at the invitation of the OAU Secretary-General, a meeting of senior officials of the secretariats of the regional economic communities and those of the General Secretariat was held on 29 March 1995 in Cairo, Egypt, under the Chairmanship of H.E. Ambassador Brownson Dede, Assistant Secretary-General in charge of the EDECO Department. It convened immediately after the seventeenth Extraordinary Session of the Council of Ministers of OAU devoted to economic and social matters of concern to Africa.
8. The meeting, inter alia:
(a) Considered and approved, after amendment, a draft Protocol on relations between the regional economic communities and the African Economic Community for submission to the next session of the Permanent Steering Committee of OAU;
(b) Recommended that OAU participate in the statutory meetings of the regional economic communities;
(c) Suggested that a meeting be organized between the Secretary-General of the Common Market of Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Executive Secretary of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in the presence of the Secretary-General of OAU to seek ways and means of strengthening relations between the two communities;
(d) Underscored the need to mobilize resources for the execution of national and regional projects; and
(e) Acknowledged the fact that the Cairo Programme of Action had to be implemented at the national, regional and continental levels.
9. Another meeting was held in Addis Ababa on 20 June 1995. It agreed to reconsider the draft Protocol on relations between regional economic communities and the African Economic Community. The draft, which was revised in Lusaka, Zambia, at the invitation of COMESA, will be submitted for consideration to the first session of the Economic and Social Commission after it has been endorsed by the regional economic communities and the African Economic Community.
11. All the OAU working languages.