News / Africa

Report: Africa in 50 Years Time

Joe DeCapua

A new report says African countries could become a dominate force in global trade over the next 50 years. The African Development Bank says their economic future depends on taking advantage of innovation, new technologies and natural and human resources.

Chief bank economist Mthuli Ncube says the report , Africa in 50 Years Time, is very encouraging.

“Absolutely. We see a moment for Africa to think visionary about where it should be in 50 years time. And this report is an attempt to begin getting that conversation going, to begin to get Africans to be forward looking. And also to raise the question on what needs to be done? Who has what responsibility? And also (to) look at all the opportunities frankly that are available in Africa,” he said

Shock Absorber

Ncube believes Africa can become a dominating force in the global economy based on its recent record.

“The Africa region has done rather well compared to 20 years ago. Africa has weathered the global crisis rather well, especially the non-commodity producing countries. Surely this is a lot more than a commodity story. It’s about a dynamic Africa. You see a lot of countries that are well managed economically, good managers. You begin to see efforts to diversify these economies. You’re beginning to see growth of an internal market led by a burgeoning middle class,” he said.

A growing demand by the middle class and increasing trade between African countries act like a shock absorber for the global economic slowdown.

“Of course, when I say this, Africa will not be unscarred. It will be. Already you could see trade finance flows kind of drying up because this is coming from the global banks, which are under pressure from the global financial crisis, the banking crisis. But overall, African countries will do ok in our view,” said Ncube.

Economic growth

Despite the economic slowdown hitting much of the world, the African Development Bank predicts strong growth for sub-Saharan Africa.

“We expect sub-Saharan Africa this year to grow at about five and a half percent and even higher next year. North Africa to be slower because of the Arab Spring, but going forward it will also recover. So we’re very bullish about Africa’s performing during the crisis,” he said.

The continent is rich in oil and gas and its minerals are already feeding the growing demand for new technology. Ncube also believes that climate change actually offers Africa new opportunities.

“There’s a lot of sunshine, to put things more in a simplistic way. Solar farms, clean energy, hydro power. So much potential in a lot of African countries on hydro power,” said Ncube.

He said one of the greatest African resources is the people, whom he describes as entrepreneurial by nature. He added, however, that the skills of African workers should be improved. Ncube says if Africa is to fulfill its potential it must overcome a number of challenges.

“Easily as much as $45 billion a year in infrastructure demand and investment goes unfunded annually. So there’s a need to close the infrastructure gap. Now number two, there’s still a need to deal with the agricultural sector in Africa – a better way to intervene in this sector in an unemotional but constructive way that crowds in the private sector. And number three is to support the private sector in Africa, so by improving investment climate. A lot has been done, but more still needs to be done,” he said.

The continent has also been hit hard by malaria, HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases that have taken a toll on the workforce. But the economist says Africa is on the way to overcoming those problems. Ncube called on investors, the private sector, policymakers and others to read the African Development Bank report and discover the opportunities that are available on the continent.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs