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Officials in Ghana Address Region's Positive Economic Growth

The United Nations Development Programme is in Ghana this week to review sub-Saharan Africa's economic performance during the past decade. The organization's director said the region is poised for positive growth over the next few years.

While in Ghana this week, the administrator for the United Nations Development Program, Helen Clark, struck an optimistic note about the economic future of the region.

"Talking about the big picture for Africa now, the latest IMF [International Monetary Fund] forecast suggests that sub-Saharan Africa would be the second fastest growing region in the world in the next couple of years. This means Africa is part of the solution to the world's problems. This is a time of potential," she said.

The UNDP regional bureau is meeting in Accra to review the sub-Saharan region's economic performance over the past decade and look at ways to tackle challenges and sustain the gains that have been made.

Clark debunked suggestions that moving into a middle-income status would have negative impacts on poor in the sub-Saharan region.

"The fact that a country then moves into that next category of middle income status means that there is a considerable potential to mobilize resources domestically, and I think that is part of the success story," she said. "I don't think we should see it as a negative. It often involves an adjustment where there's been a significant amount of overseas development assistance that starts to drop away, but that needs to be then compensated for by domestic resource mobilization of the financial position that the country is in."

Clark also spoke about the prospects of a review of the Millennium Development Goals, as there are doubts that the 2015 targets can be met.