External Publication of Job Posting 50710011
SECRETARY GENERAL – AFCFTA
Job Posting Title
Secretary-General – AfCFTA
The African Union, established as a unique Pan African continental body, is charged with spearheading Africa’s
rapid integration and sustainable development by promoting unity, solidarity, cohesion and cooperation among
the peoples of Africa and African States as well as developing a New Partnership worldwide.
The African Union Heads of State and Government decided through Decision Assembly/AU/Dec.394 (XVIII) of
January 2012 to fast-track the establishment of the Continental Free Trade Area. Negotiations were launched in
2015 in Johannesburg, South Africa and all 55 African countries have been participating in the process. The
Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) was concluded on 21 March 2018 in
Kigali, Rwanda and came into force on 30 May 2019.
Article 3 of the AfCFTA Agreement provides that the general objectives of the Agreement are to create a single
market for goods and services facilitated by movement of persons to deepen economic integration of the African
continent in accordance with the vision of “an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa” enshrined in Agenda
2063. The AfCFTA will deliver an integrated continental market of 1.3 billion consumers with aggregate GDP of
USD 3.4 trillion. The specific objectives of the AfCFTA are outlined in Article 4 of the Agreement. The
operational phase of the AfCFTA was launched on 07th July 2019 during the 12th Extraordinary Summit of AU
Heads of State and Government in Niamey, Niger. During that same Summit, AU Heads of State and
Government agreed that the headquarters of the AfCFTA shall be in Accra, Ghana and also set the date of 1
July 2020 as the start of trading under the AfCFTA. The Heads of State and Government also agreed that the
Secretariat shall be established by March 2020.
In view of the above background, the AfCFTA Secretariat through the African Union commission invites qualified
and competent applicants who are citizens of Member States of the African Union with relevant skills,
competencies and experiences to submit their applications for the position of the SECRETARY GENERAL of
the AfCFTA Secretariat based at its headquarters in Accra, Ghana.
Job Title: Secretary General – AfCFTA
Organ/Department: The AfCFTA Secretariat
Duty Station: Accra, Ghana
Reports to: The Council of Ministers responsible for Trade
Supervisor: Bureau of the Council of Ministers responsible for Trade
Number of Positions: 1
Under the overall guidance of the Council of Ministers, to provide leadership and technical support to AfCFTA
Secretariat and overall management of the day-to-day functioning of the Secretariat to ensure it achieves its
desired mandate. In particular, The Secretary General will be responsible for the management of the AfCFTA
Secretariat, implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement and strategic collaboration; diplomatic, representation
and stakeholders’ engagement; information management and dissemination and resources mobilization for the
implementation of the AfCFTA.
i. Leadership and management of the AfCFTA Secretariat
• Provide leadership and overall management of the AfCFTA Secretariat, this include undertaking
measures aimed at promoting the timely administration and implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement;
• Administration and finances of the Secretariat in accordance with the provisions of the Agreement and
in line with the African Union rules and regulations;
• developing draft staff and financial regulations of the Secretariat for approval by the Council of Ministers
• Develop operational and administrative policies and guidelines;
• Appointment of the staff of the Secretariat, in accordance with staff regulations;
• Prepare and execute the Annual Budget and the Work Programme of the AfCFTA Secretariat;
• Prepare the budget and Audited Accounts of the AfCFTA Secretariat for consideration by the Council of
• Prepare of Annual reports of the activities of the AfCFTA Secretariat and its institutions for consideration
by the Council of Ministers; and
• Custodian of the AfCFTA properties including documents and archive.
ii. Implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement and Strategic Collaboration
• Serve as a depository of notifications from State Parties required under the AfCFTA Agreement and
transmit such notifications to State Parties;
• Supporting the establishment and ensuring the proper functioning of other AfCFTA implementation
structure and the Dispute Settlement Mechanism in accordance with the AfCFTA Agreements and relevant
Protocols and facilitate the implementation of their decisions;
• Organize and service meetings of the AfCFTA Institutions provided for in Article 9 of the AfCFTA
Agreement as well as other implementation structures established pursuant to the AfCFTA Agreement;
• Assist the AfCFTA State Parties in the implementation process, including domestication, commissioning
of studies, preparation of briefings and working papers and the undertaking of consultations as requested;
• Initiate program and initiatives to build the capacity AfCFTA State Parties to implement the AfCFTA
• Provide guidance, support and monitor the performance of the AfCFTA in the various aspects of
administration and implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement to ensure conformity and harmony with agreed
policies, strategies, programmes and projects;
• Provide timely, high quality analytical advice and conduct studies in areas relevant to AfCFTA
• Promote strategic collaboration among the AfCFTA Secretariat, the AU Commission and the Secretariat
of the Regional Economic Communities with a view to aligning programmes and institutions as well as
facilitating the establishment of the African Common Market and the African Economic Community; and
• Liaise closely with the AU Commission with respect to issues pertaining to AfCFTA negotiations and
iii. Diplomatic, representation and stakeholders’ engagement
• Develop and implement communication, public relations and promotion strategies of the AfCFTA in
respect to implementation of the Agreement; and
• Collaborate with the Private Sector and civil society in the implementation of the AfCFTA Agreement.
iv. Information management and dissemination
• Establish means for the collection, dissemination and exchange of information and statistics in close
collaboration with relevant institutions of the AU Commission including the African Trade Observatory; and
• Publicizing the activities of the AfCFTA Secretariat.
v. Resources mobilization
• Develop and establish mechanisms and strategies for resources mobilization for the AfCFTA in close
collaboration with the AU Commission and under the guidance of the Council of Ministers of AfCFTA.
vi. Other duties
• Perform any other related functions as may be determined from time to time by the Committee of Senior
Officials, the Council of Ministers or the African Union Heads of State and Governments Summit.
1. REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE
Applicants must have:
• A minimum of an advanced/master’s university degree in the fields of International Trade, Economics,
International Relations, International Development Policy, Law, Business Administration or other relevant
• A minimum of 15 years extensive and relevant work experience in positions dealing with trade,
economics or related subjects agreements;
• Established record of implementation and monitoring of multilateral or regional or bilateral trade
agreements, particularly the dispute settlement mechanisms and trade defense instruments of such
• Experience in leading the formulation and implementation of trade policies at national or regional levels,
including proven ability to achieve consensus of domestic or regional stakeholders;
• Experience in working with and advising governments at a senior management/executive level;
Previous managerial experience in leading an organization and/or a team of professionals; and
• Experience in project management and leading change in an organization.
2. REQUIRED SKILLS, KNOWLEDGE AND COMPETENCES
• Leading or working in a ministry responsible for trade or an international or regional organization and
exposure to diplomatic protocol;
• Experience in liaising with government ministers and heads of states;
• In depth knowledge of and/or past involvement in relevant regional trade framework agreements and
negotiations in the region;
• Proven track record of working collaboratively with commercial drivers of trade and investment in Africa;
• A strong commitment to the values of impartiality, honesty, integrity and objectivity;
• Evidence of ability to lead, motivate and guide a team of senior trade professionals;
• Capacity to deliver result;
• International experience, with a personal reputation of the highest order among global and African trade
• Experience in working in a multicultural environment.
• Ability to provide guidance and strategic direction to great team of professional and general service
• Performance management and capacity building skills for the team; and
• Ability to develop and lead multicultural team in the implementation of organization strategies, programs
• Proven ability to forge international and national partnerships to deliver successful outcomes as well as
an ability to work and engage with a diverse range of stakeholders handling potentially competing objectives;
• Proven ability to effectively engage and influence at the highest political level of government in Africa,
providing counsel on trade policy, trade negotiations and strategy.
Knowledge and Understanding
• Demonstrable in-depth knowledge of the Agreement Establishing the AfCFTA, its Protocols and its
subsidiary legal instruments;
• A good working knowledge of African countries capacity needs in terms of implementing trade
agreements and policies;
• Detailed knowledge of regional trade relations between developed and developing countries and
relevant WTO agreements.
• Demonstrable extensive knowledge of the functioning and decision making processes of the African
regional trade and economic integration and/or multilateral trading system;
• Strong leadership, managerial, analytical, people and team skills;
• Superior communication skills in at least one of the AU languages, including report writing and oral
• Experience in public communication and dealing with the media.
3. LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT:
Applicants must be proficient in one of the following African Union working languages; Arabic, English, French
or Portuguese. Knowledge of one more or several other working languages would be an added advantage.
4. TENURE OF APPOINTMENT AND ASSUMPTION OF DUTY:
As per the AfCFTA Council of Minister’s decision the term of service for the Secretary-General shall be 4 (four)
years, renewable only once subject to attainment of agreed performance objectives and deliverables. Applicants
to the position of Secretary-General must be ready to assume duty before the 31st March 2020.
5. LEAST REPRESENTATIVE COUNTRIES:
Candidates from the following least represented countries are encouraged to apply: Algeria, Angola, Cape
Verde, Central African Rep. , Comoros, Congo (DRC), Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini, Ghana,
Guinea, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Morocco, Namibia, Saharawi Arab D.R. , Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles,
Somalia, South Africa and South Sudan
6. GENDER MAINSTREAMING:
The AU Commission is an equal opportunity employer and qualified candidates, including women, are strongly
encouraged to apply.
7. REMUNERATION AND BENEFITS:
The successful applicant will be offered a competitive remuneration package subject to experience and
qualifications and as per the AU Salary Scale and Benefits. The details of salary and allowances will be
communicated to successful candidates upon selection.
8. HOW TO APPLY
All applications which include passport copy, professional certificates, CV, Cover letter and a proposal indicating
how the Secretary General will operationalize the functioning of the AfCFTA secretariat must be submitted
through the AU Commission’s website http://www.aucareers.org on or before 19 January 2020.
The AfCFTA Secretariat