African "Schengen" to be created by 2018

Breanainn

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The annual meeting of the African Union will see government leaders ussued with the first African passports, enabling them to travel without hindrance throughout the continent. The aim is to extend the scheme to all citizens by 2018, and create an African common market by 2019. Of course, given the size of the continent and climatic extremes, even travel within single countries can prove challenging at times, but if free trade reduces conflict and corruption, the scheme could be most historic:

The African Union is introducing a single passport to make travel on the continent easier for Africans
 


Dame_Enda

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They obviously haven't been paying attention to recent events in the EU.

Boko Haram, Al Shabaab, ISIS , the Lords Resistance Army and AQIM will be delighted with this.
 
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gleeful

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The annual meeting of the African Union will see government leaders ussued with the first African passports, enabling them to travel without hindrance throughout the continent. The aim is to extend the scheme to all citizens by 2018, and create an African common market by 2019. Of course, given the size of the continent and climatic extremes, even travel within single countries can prove challenging at times, but if free trade reduces conflict and corruption, the scheme could be most historic:

The African Union is introducing a single passport to make travel on the continent easier for Africans
Interesting they are starting with this rather than, say, infrastructure. Its still often cheaper to travel from kenya to Nigeria via heathrow. And you cant drive or take a train from one to the other.

Good luck to them anyway.
 

Windowshopper

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I remember on Question Time the poet Benjamin Zephaniah stated that he finds it easier to get around Europe than Africa. Apparently in some cases if he's in Africa and wants to travel to another Africian country then he has to fly back to the UK, and then fly to his destination.

I think some kind of African Union is needed if African countries want to deal with the USA,EU etc on an equal basis.

However I think African countries shouldn't try to rush headlong into this; one of the good things about the EU is that it ties membership in with democracy, human rights and transparency regulations. I am not sure an 'African EU' would work to its optimal potential if countries with bad records are admitted.

Also Africa should be careful about a Schengen some countries such as South Africa have seen the rise of populist xenophobia as other Africans have emigrated there (ironically the manifestation of such xenophobia shows that people are more alike then we are different), and Schengen is beginning to creak in Europe- the close call in the Austrian elections and Brexit being examples (yes I know the UK isn't under Schengen but it shows how free movement is causing resentment).

The raising of some voices on the centre-left such as Ed Balls and Tom Watson in the UK, and the new Chancellor of Austria shows that some European politicians are coming to the conclusion that free movement has to be modified if they European project is going to hold.
 
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gleeful

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The AU should focus on infrastructure, education and farming. An African CAP would have a major positive impact on society.

Passports and currencies can come later. Most Africans never leave their home state. Ones that do are more likely to visit the US or Europe than their neighbours.
 

forest

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Makes perfect sence from an African point of view. If you look at a map of Africa the borders are straight lines set up by the various European powers. The counties are meaningless
 

Dame_Enda

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Makes perfect sence from an African point of view. If you look at a map of Africa the borders are straight lines set up by the various European powers. The counties are meaningless
Mostly true but not always eg Morocco, Egypt, Ghana, Mali.
 

JohnD66

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Potentially, free travel and free trade would remove a lot of scope for corruption. At the moment, officials tend to collect 'unofficial' tariffs at every border.
 


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