The African Development Bank (AfDB) Annual Meetings will take place on 23-27 of May 2016 in Lusaka, Zambia. The AfDB will unveil its new agenda for the continent’s economic transformation at this year’s Annual Meetings.
For more information on the Annual Meetings, please visit the AfDB website: http://www.afdb.org/en/annual-meetings-2016/
The African Economic Outlook (AEO) analyses the present state of affairs in Africa, provides two-year forecasts and addresses a special theme, supporting all with extensive data.
The five chapters in Part I cover economic and social aspects of the continent and allude to this year’s theme: sustainable cities and structural transformation. Part II’s three chapters concentrate solely on the theme, building on analysis from the African Economic Outlook 2015: Regional Development and Spatial Inclusion. Country notes on each of Africa’s 54 countries constitute Part III; their short version is produced here. For the first time, the statistical annex includes a table on gender, comparing indicators from the three partner organisations.
The Report’s main conclusion is that regional integration is still a relevant pillar for Africa’s development, although the global context has changed greatly since the continental goal was first introduced in the 1960s. The challenge going forward is not so much the formulation of new policies but rather the implementation of those formulated in the recent past. This will require political resolve and heightened institutional capacities.
The challenge for African economies is to ensure that global value chains have a positive impact on socially inclusive development. Africa’s participation in global value chains is currently limited to lower value activities although opportunities exist for upgrading to higher ones. African countries can further integrate into global value chains by opening to trade, targeting regional and emerging markets, modernising infrastructure, promoting local entrepreneurship, and investing in education. Global value chains require additional considerations: each value chain has unique requirements; policies may be suited for integrating into global value chains but not conducive to upgrading; and unnecessary tax incentive systems can result in a loss of revenue. Equitable economic and social transformations and environmental sustainability remain core concerns for Africa to maximise the gains that global value chains can offer.
In order to put in place the policies that will stimulate the development of competitive firms in job-creating activities, policymakers need
i. to be aware of what the new rules of the game in international trade mean for African economies,
ii. to assess those economies' strengths and weaknesses in that context and
iii. to consider the policy options best suited to their country's endowments and their own national strategy.
This AEO2014 thematic volume, complete with individual case studies for all 54 African economies, aims to help them in that endeavour.
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AfricanEconomicOutlook.org offers comprehensive and comparable data and analysis of 54 African economies.