News / Africa

Experts Cautiously Optimistic about Africa Economy

Kelly J. Kelly
“Trade, not aid” was the theme for panelists discussing Africa’s growing economy at the Congressional Black Caucus’ Brain Trust meeting in Washington, DC recently.

Although speakers were mostly positive about what’s happening on the continent – including Botswana’s seven percent growth rate – Jay Ireland, the President and CEO for the Africa division of the multi-national giant General Electric (GE), introduced a note of caution into the discussion.

“Africa is rising. What I worry about is Africa getting choked,” Ireland said.

Ireland - who’s based in Nairobi, Kenya - said one of the biggest things Africa needs right now to maintain its economic momentum is basic education. 
 
“We, the private sector, can take graduates from universities, or high schools, and train them into being technicians, engineers, leaders,” Ireland said. “But we can’t do that if we can’t get a good base of education provided to us by the governments themselves.”
Ireland added that ongoing financial investments are also critical.

But some in the audience questioned where those investments should come from. Akira Chiba, a Japanese diplomat who used to represent his government in South Sudan said, “When I was in South Sudan, I noticed a tremendous presence of Chinese nationals there—together, sadly, with a certain amount of unfriendliness toward them, to use a diplomatic terminology. So my question is what role do you expect China to play for further development of Africa?”

The World Bank’s Vice President for Africa, Makhtar Diop, was quick to answer.
“The needs are huge in Africa, and we cannot have the luxury as Africans to be picky about who should be coming and investing in Africa, be it the private sector, be it the World Bank, be it the IFC, be it China, be it the EU, be it the US. We need everybody to come and invest in Africa,” Diop said.

The day ended as it had begun, on a positive note. Africa was not only rising, panelists agreed, but finally getting the world’s attention as a place to come, do business, and make money.


Listen to report on CBC Brain Trust Meeting on Africa's Economy
Listen to report on CBC Brain Trust Meeting on Africa's Economyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: The Big Picture
September 27, 2012 10:16 PM
Somehow the Zimbabwean situation is discreetly avoided and not commented upon, given all that has happened there. Doing business and making money is what it really is, but "The Fear is a Reality".

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid