The idea of the proposed merger between the Association of African Trade Promotion Organizations (AATPO) and the Federation of African Chambers of Commerce (FACC) was born from the creation in 1983 by the Conference of Ministers of CEA, ad hoc committee of 10 Member States, in order to proceed to the evaluation of regional development institutions created under the auspices of ECA and other measures on their future status. The evaluation report recommended the maintaining of the status quo and urged Member States to continue to provide financial support.
The poor performance recorded during the past decade due to lack of financial resources from the first evaluation report to bring the Conference of Ministers of ECA to urgently adopt in 1992, resolution 726 (XXVII) of 1997 requiring the preparation of a study on the rationalization and harmonization of regional development institutions. The report prepared in this context, the following year, recommended the consolidation, including the merger of regional institutions of development with interrelated objectives and functions.
While agreeing in principle the proposed consolidation, the Conference of Ministers requested a further feasibility study recommending the merger of institutions eligible. Following extensive consultations with various stakeholders, the Conference of Ministers at the end of its resolution 827 (XXII) of 1997, adopted the recommendations of the study follow-up supporting the merger of certain institutions and requested ECA to help facilitate the process.
The FACC and AATPO whose common objectives are the promotion and development of intra-African trade has been identified as potential partners may be merged among regional development organizations in the category of sub-group trade and finance . It is in the light of the above that, at a special joint meeting in April 1999 at the CEA boards of The AATPO and CCAF approved the proposed merger of the two organizations and demand ECA to facilitate the process. As a basic document the next joint meeting of the boards concerned, this report is a step in this direction.