African Trade Observatory (ATO)

    The African Trade Observatory (ATO) is one of five operational instruments of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The ATO provides reliable and up-to-date data for businesses and policymakers to make informed decisions and to monitor the agreement’s impact.


    Spanning 54 countries, supporting a market of over one billion people, and contributing over $3 trillion to global GDP, the AfCFTA presents a game-changing opportunity to create a unified continental market and increase regional integration. 

    To capitalize on emerging opportunities in Africa, businesses require prompt and relevant market information. To that end, the ATO dashboard was launched in July 2019 as an operational tool of the AfCFTA.  

    The ATO, led by the African Union (AU) and implemented by the International Trade Centre (ITC), specifically through its Trade and Market Intelligence (TMI) section, has a duration until 28 February 2026. Through reliable and timely data, it offers African businesses trade intelligence, including trends, opportunities, and market access conditions. Additionally, ATO enables government officials and policymakers to track the AfCFTA implementation process and assess its impact on their economies.

    Screenshot of the African Trade Monitor website

    The ATO dashboard comprises three specialized modules: 

    Compare: African entrepreneurs can compare markets for their products to identify promising opportunities.
    Explore: Businesses can dig deeper to find detailed trade and market access information for an identified opportunity. 
    Monitor: African policymakers can track the state of intra-African integration over time. 


    Key features

    • Comprehensive trade data on international markets and market access conditions. 

    • Interactive visualizations such as graphs and charts to easily interpret information. 

    • Customized dashboards to suit your needs and research. 

    ITC contact

    ato [at]