The ongoing African Prosperity Dialogue Series has started on a historic note as this year marks the 60th Anniversary of the Organisation of Africa’s Unity. African leaders in politics, ambassadors, directors in business, entrepreneurs and delegates in other industries have all gathered in Ghana.
This dialogue is an avenue to share ideas amongst enterprises and industries across Africa to build lasting networks to put the trajectory of Africa’s prosperity ‘From Ambition To Action: Delivering Prosperity Through Continental Trade’, as the theme for the dialogue series.
In addition to this there will be another meeting for leaders in Addis Ababa next month to extend the conversation as Gabby Otchere Darko stated in his address ‘Africa’s political leaders will once again meet in Addis Ababa, to talk about our common destiny. Our voices here in Adukrom should resonate in Ethiopia’.
Founder and Executive Chair of the African Prosperity Network (APN), Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, who joined virtually proposed to all that they were working to bring together to make the gathering one of an enviable platform for action. “We can build a strong network of Pan-African partnership to make this annual retreat a most powerful, actionable platform of choice for building the one, prosperous Africa we want and know we can get done,” he said.
Speaking at the event, the Executive Director of the Africa Prosperity Network (APN), Mr Eugene Owusu encouraged all not to only celebrate the success of the AfCFTA, he added that ‘African must, all sons and daughters of this continent, lift our eyes and thoughts beyond the challenges of today to the hopes of tomorrow inspired by the African Continental Free Trade Area’.
Keynote speaker for the event, H. E. Vice President Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia charged businesses to believe that this is the time for action. “This is the time for businesses to dialogue on SMART ways to enjoy the opportunities from the Agreement for a resilient, sustainable, inclusive and prosperous Africa”.
This charge is imperative as Africa accounts for about 3% of global trade and intra-African trade is one of the lowest of any region globally. It is believed that is as a result of the “colonial” economic model characterised by small individual economies, fragmented and disconnected regional markets, over-reliance and low productive capacities that we have practised for 60 years.
Vice President Dr. Bawumia added that “the AfCFTA is a real game-changer, and once fully realised can increase intra-African trade by some US$ 35 billion and reduce external imports by some US$ 10 billion annually. He further acknowledged that this will mean more opportunities for growth and for small businesses and the potential to lift more than 3 million people out of poverty”.
The second day of the summit shall continue in the Eastern Region of Ghana with discussions covering: Critical Legal and Institutional Constraints; Facilitating the Free Movement of People Across Borders; Security and Intra-Africa Trade; and FDI and Diaspora Direct Investment: Channelling Diaspora Capital as a driver for economic growth.