Africa natural resources failed to create jobs - Kuugongelwa-Amadhila

24 Mar 2017 08:20am
WINDHOEK, 24 MAR (NAMPA) – Africa’s largest source of growth, the exploration of its natural resources, has failed to create enough employment, Prime Minister (PM) Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila has said.
The PM made the statement during the inaugural launch of the African Economic Platform (AEP) in Mauritius on Tuesday.
In a statement provided to the media on Thursday, Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said growth in the private sector on the African continent has been uneven and the exploration of natural resources, which is the continent’s largest source of growth, has failed to create enough jobs.
“Given the private sector‘s growth potential on one hand and the challenges it faces on the other, there is a need to fundamentally change our thinking on how best to harness the private sector’s role in generating more business.”
She said there is a need to shape the private sector to achieve inclusiveness, which means growth and opportunities will be shared by all women and men, young or old; rural communities and urban multinationals; and large and small businesses.
“A vibrant private sector is both an engine of growth and an agent for development through eroding poverty, strengthening communities and societies and providing services for all.”
She said Africa must equally take into account the gradual transition to green development, as the continent is committed to moving toward environmentally sustainable growth.
Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said the strategic interventions to leverage the private sector should be built around three strategic pillars. The first pilla include improving Africa’s investment and business climate through strengthened policies, tax systems, rights, regulations and procedures that govern business, which means fighting corruption and promoting financial transparency.
“We must also improve the planning and execution of our infrastructure investments, deepening and expanding the financial and capital markets, strengthening the labour markets and building the business skills of young people and entrepreneurs.”
The second pillar is narrowing the infrastructure gap in Africa as it limits regional and international trade. The third pillar is about promoting enterprise development by helping businesses gain access to finance, buildings skills and adding value to activities.
Held from 19 to 21 March 2017, the African Union’s EAP was established for African political leaders, businesspersons and intellectuals to meet and discuss the role of the private sector in the continent’s development and goal of industrialisation.