NEPAD urges regional integration
Regional integration is a key component of Africa’s development strategy if the continent is to build a strong African Economic Community that will be competitive in the global economy by 2028, NEPAD CEO Dr Ibrahim Mayaki told the African Group of Ambassadors ahead of the United Nations General Assembly Africa Debate at the UN Headquarters in New York this week.
Dr Mayaki said that eleven of the world’s fastest growing economies are in Africa, hence the need to promote regional integration that will enable economies of scale, and in turn attract private sector investment.
The session, which was held as part of the UN’s International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, was attended by senior heads of key international development agencies, including Maged Abdelaziz, Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Africa (OSAA); Kandeh Yumkella, Director-General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and Michel Tommo Monthe, Chair of the African Group of Ambassadors and Permanent Representatives to the UN.
Abdelaziz commended NEPAD on its efforts to alleviate poverty in Africa despites critical challenges in implementing sustained infrastructure, challenges, which were yet to be tackled.
Dr Mayaki said that infrastructure still remains a major constraint to modernising African countries and achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MGDs). If African governments were to invest adequately in it, the Continent would experience unprecedented socio-economic growth. To that end, some pre requisites are needed such as an enabling environment with sound financing instruments in a context which good governance is prevailing coupled to an efficient domestic resources mobilisation.