After the Kigali summit, more signatures were added to the AfCFTA. At the African Union summit in Nouakchott on 1 July 2018, five other nations, including South Africa, joined the agreement. Kenya and Ghana were the first nations to ratify the agreement and deposit their ratifications on 10 May 2018.  Of the signatories, 22 had to ratify the agreement in order for it to enter into force on 29 April 2019, when Sierra Leone and the Sahara Arab Democratic Republic ratified the agreement.  As a result, the agreement entered into force 30 days later, on May 30, 2019; At that time, only Benin, Nigeria and Eritrea had not yet signed. Outstanding issues, such as trade concessions and rules of origin, are still under negotiation. [When? ] Eritrea was not part of the original agreement due to a persistent state of war, but the 2018 peace agreement between Ethiopia and Eritrea ended the conflict and ended the barrier to Eritrea`s participation in the free trade agreement.      The unrecenized state of Somaliland did not participate in the discussions on the creation of the agreement. What complicates the negotiations is that Africa was already divided into eight separate free trade areas and/or customs unions, with different rules. [Note 1] These regional forums will continue to exist; The African Continental Free Trade Agreement aims, first, to remove barriers to trade between the various pillars of the African Economic Community and, finally, to use these regional organizations as building blocks of the ultimate goal of an Africa-wide customs union.
    The SAfCFTA Secretariat will be responsible for coordinating the implementation of the agreement and will be an autonomous body within the AU system. Although it has an independent legal personality, it works closely with the AU Commission and receives its budget from the AU. The Council of Ministers responsible for trade decides on the location of the head office, structure, role and competences.  The Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union is the supreme decision-making body. It will likely meet at AU summits.  The Council of Ministers responsible for trade oversees strategic trade policy and ensures the effective implementation and enforcement of the AfCFTA Agreement.  Yulia Vnukova advises in the Trade and Regional Integration Unit (ETIRI) of the World Bank. Based on more than ten years of experience, Yulia`s current work focuses on trade policy and regional integration, with a focus on macroeconomic and microeconomic analysis of trade, trade and sectoral competitiveness, global value chains and private sector development in emerging countries in Europe, in Asia and Africa.
. . .