Guest Contributor | Sep 14, 2018 | 0
Africa rising depends on Africans rising – Africa Development Bank
The 16th edition of the African Economic Outlook (AEO) 2017 released in Berlin Germany on Monday at the African Development Bank Group’s 52nd Annual Meetings highlights that Africa’s economic performance is reflecting the perils of the global economy.
President of the African Development Bank Group, Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina, speaking from Abidjan said the continent’s average growth is expected to rebound to 3.4% in 2017, assuming that the recovery in commodity prices is sustained, the world economy is strengthened and domestic macroeconomic reforms are entrenched.
To bolster this momentum, this year’s African Economic Outlook proposes several concrete steps for action. “Africa’s industrialisation will differ from the experience of other world regions. First, the 54 African countries are diverse and will thus follow various pathways to industrialisation. Second, industrialisation will not rely solely on the manufacturing sector, which remains modest at 11% of the continent’s GDP,” Adesina said.
Adesina said it is essential, to double efforts to empower Africans with the necessary skills to promote development from the bottom up, driven by domestic innovation and investment.
“This is why the African Economic Outlook focuses this year on the role of entrepreneurs in Africa’s industrialisation.”
A section of country notes summaries recent economic growth, forecasts gross domestic product for 2017 and 2018, and highlights the main policy issues facing each of the continent. The region’s real GDP growth slowed down to 2.2% in 2016, mainly due to the continued fall in commodity prices and weak global economic growth.
New industrialisation strategies should therefore according to finding in the book leverage Africa’s booming entrepreneurs.
The entrepreneurial culture is vibrant with about 80% of Africans viewing entrepreneurship as a good career opportunity. The continent has the highest share in the world of adults starting or running new businesses, but often in sectors where productivity remains low.
Secretary-General for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Angel Gurría mentions speaking from Paris mentions how East Africa was the fastest growing region at 5.3% real GDP growth, followed by North Africa at 3%.
Martha Phiri mentions how Namibia as having growth sharply moderated to 1.3% in 2016 but should rebound in 2017 as the agriculture sector recovers and production from new mines accelerates.
Alka Bhatia who also wrote on the Namibian situation-analysis said that on-going fiscal consolidation policy measures to reduce public debt and help address the current account imbalance it is said will also need to protect growth-promotion from public investments.
The “Growth at Home” strategy for industrialisation and the policy for promoting micro, small and medium enterprises it is said in the report provides a strong foundation for diversification and job creation but the pace for business environment reforms needs increasing to support entrepreneurship.
United Nations Development Programme Administrator, Helen Clark said that growth in other regions on the continent is being anaemic, ranging from a low of 0.4% in West Africa, dragged down by the recession in Nigeria, to 1.1% in Southern Africa, with South Africa, the region’s largest economy, posting only 0.3% growth.
The African Economic Outlook, produced by the African Development Bank, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the United Nations Development Programme, aims to promote up-to-date evidence and analytics to support Africa’s decision makers
With dynamic private sectors, entrepreneurial spirit and vast resources, Africa has the potential to grow faster and more inclusively. In 2018, growth is expected to strengthen, growing by 4.3%. The composition of total financial flows to Africa reflects the dynamism of its domestic markets.