South Africa, the G20, and Regional Integration in Sub-Saharan Africa
African economic integration suffers from a litany of problems so a much more limited approach to African economic integration is required. Experts identify extensive business opportunities that will be fueled by the rising urban consumer classes emerging in many African countries. What role could regional economic integration play in addressing African development challenges? Aggregate levels of intra-regional trade in Africa remain the lowest in the world. Pooling markets through regional economic integration in principle affords greater economies of scale and the potential for regional production sharing. The G20’s main contribution will be through influencing key donor governments and agencies, particularly the multilateral and regional development banks, and using its networks to leverage private sector investment into African economies. South Africa is well-placed to act as a bridge between external and African stakeholders in the regional economic integration space and to champion alignment of regional priorities with external interventions in support of economic integration.