2010 Tutu Fellow Lerato Mataboge delivered a TEDx Lyttleton Women Talk on the necessity and urgency for African countries to trade among themselves as a way to address economic challenges and recover from the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Titled, Why Intra-Africa Trade Matters, she says that African countries not only need to trade among themselves as a way to address economic challenges and undo colonial patterns of consumption and distribution, they need to begin doing so with a sense of urgency. This type of trade can play a key role in helping the continent recover from the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
She begins her talk about vanilla, the bulk of which in the global market is grown in Madagascar. Madagascar exports it and when it comes back to the continent, it costs so much more. Africa trading away its resources must change, she says, and the continent must begin adding value before exports occur so as to retain the value at home.