Implementing the AfCFTA Agreement: A Case for the Harmonization of Data Protection Law in Africa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The Agreement Establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AEAfCFTA) is a revolutionary treaty of the African Union (AU) which creates an African single market to guarantee the free movement of persons, capital, goods and services. The AEAfCFTA is geared towards enabling seamless trade among African countries. The single market relies heavily on the processing of the personal data of persons resident within and outside the AU, thereby necessitating an effective data protection regime. However, the data protection regime across Africa is fragmented, with each country either having a distinct data protection framework or none at all. This lack of a uniform continental framework threatens to clog the wheels of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), because by demanding compliance with the various data protection laws across Africa, free trade will be inhibited, the very problem the AEAfCFTA seeks to remediate. These concerns are considered and applicable solutions are proposed to ensure the successful implementation of the AfCFTA.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of African Law
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2022
MoEC publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • AfCFTA
  • data protection
  • Africa
  • privacy
  • free trade

Field of science

  • Law


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