The mission of AECIT is to support the Vision 2063 of the African Union, and in particular the realization of the African Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA). It will do so through designing policy research and executive development programs, based on multi-disciplinary research, which will help to realize it.

Given the ancient and close economic linkages between Africa and Europe, AECIT also pays particular attention to the various trade and cooperation agreements with the European Union and the effects on sustainable economic growth in Africa.

It therefore focusses on:
Development of framework conditions for trade and investment and for integration of small and medium-sized companies in global value chains.
Research & Innovation as key drivers for developing sustainable business strategies and competitive advantage in the global economy.
Inclusive corporate strategy development focusing on all aspects of the value chain and on social beneficiation.
Governance of regional market integration processes, organization of efficacious institutions and highly capable staff.
Increasing steering capabilities of governments for managing complex policy processes in the global interdependent economy.


AECIT results from an idea conceived by its current director, further developed with various stakeholders, such as the Commission of the European Union (EU) and the Commission of the African Union (AU).

It has finally been realized Henley Business School (University of Reading, UK) at its long-established African campus in Johannesburg, where AECIT will be located now.

The Centre has three major functions:

capacity acceleration programs,

research & publications;

policy think tank & advice.

The Centre provides an African platform for research and executive development, in collaboration with other academic centres.

In all programs, the Centre’s approach is on markets as an integral part of societies, on the inter-actions of the public and private sector for sustainable wealth creation and distribution and on the entire value chain of companies, including the often overlooked part provided by governments and supra-national institutions.

In 2017-2018, AECIT is carrying out research on:

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Executive Development

We develop company managers and public officials.

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