On Friday, 20th September 2019, the President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at Princeton University says the leadership of Africa should create congenial atmosphere to make Africa an attractive destination for the youth. Africa should be seen as a continent of greener pastures, and wealth.
According to President Akufo-Addo, “the irony is that Africa should really not be in this conundrum. There are good reasons why we should be able to get ourselves out of the hole and onto the path of hope and prosperity. Indeed, as the theme rightly states, the future is African, and properly so.”
Africa abounds in natural resources like gold, diamond, oil, timber, bauxite, manganese, etc., Industries could be built to process these before they are exported or used. When these resources are processed value is added. If prudent, efficient and effective management of these resources is done Africa’s developmental agenda could be financed.
Africa has huge uncultivated land for agriculture. If agriculture huge and sustainable investment is made in agriculture coupled with mechanization and digital technology. When this is done it will ensure food security in Africa and this means that billions of money spent on importation would drastically reduce and promote agro-based economic activities.
Africa has a growing youthful population which is being estimated by the United Nations that in 2050 youthful population of Africa is going to grow to about a quarter of the world’s youth population. If these youth are given access to education, trained and empowered, Africa’s economic and the world at large development would be enhanced.
Africa is gradually tilting toward trading in both intermediate and final products due to industrialization. By 2030 if this trend continues then Africa could be exporting amongst member countries and the world at large to the tune of about 3 trillion dollars. With the coming into force of the African Continental Free Trade Area, which will all the 54 markets, covering 1.2 billion people, into a single market, it will be the world’s largest free trade area since the formation of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). I am proud that Ghana, my country is chosen to be the secretariat of AfCFTA and this is the first of its kind in the history of Ghana.