Dambisa Moyo, a global economist, and author contends in her book ‘Dead Aid’ that while foreign aid that addresses humanitarian needs caused by drought and conflict is helpful, most of the aid given to African countries is rather harmful.
This fact cannot be debunked if we critically observe the Asian continent. We can glean from retrospect that the keys to success in many Asian countries were the role of a strong, interventionist state that nurtured industry and an elite who invested in their own country.
In the Africa continent, unfortunately, this has not been the school of thought. Thanks to Leaders who have emerged out of Africa like the Afro champions.
The Afro Champions Initiative is a set of innovative public-private partnerships and flagship programs designed to galvanize African resources and institutions to support the emergence and success of African private sector multinational champions in the regional and global spheres.
The Initiative is driven by prominent private and public sector Africans in recognition of the fact that the emergence of homegrown pan-African companies represents something very special in the history and struggle of Africa.
And that we must act together to promote and harness their success for the continent’s transformation.
We have the Numbers.
The economy of Africa consists of the trade, industry, agriculture, and human resources of the continent. As of 2019, approximately 1.3 billion people were living in 54 countries in Africa. Africa is a resource-rich continent. Recent growth has been due to growth in sales in commodities, services, and manufacturing. West Africa, East Africa, Central Africa and Southern Africa in particular, are expected to reach a combined GDP of $29 trillion by 2050. (Wikipedia)
In 2017, the African Development Bank reported Africa to be the world's second-fastest-growing economy and estimates that average growth will rebound to 3.4% in 2017, while growth is expected to increase by 4.3% in 2018.
The most dynamic societies in the world are the ones that have the most Economic agents, plus the economic and legal structure to encourage and motivate Economic agents to greater activities.
In 2000, total revenues earned by Chinese state-owned industrial enterprises and those in the non-state-owned sector Chinese private enterprises were roughly the same at about 4 trillion yuan each. By 2013, while total revenues at state-owned companies had risen just over six fold, revenues in the non-state sector had risen by more than 18 times.
Premier Li Keqiang called for “mass entrepreneurship and innovation” and made it the leading agenda of China’s national economic strategy. In his work report speech at the 2016 National People’s Congress, Premier Li mentioned the word “innovation” 59 times and “entrepreneurship” 22 times. Other popular phrases such as “Internet Plus”, “sharing economy”, “big data” and “Internet of Things” also appeared in the report multiple times.
What does it take to become an Economic Agent?
Economic agents are any individuals, institutions or groups of institutions that play a part in any economic circuit through their rational actions and decisions. Although they have different roles in the economic, production, investment or consumption circuit, they establish essential economic relationships with each other: (APB)
Economic agents occupy a central position in a market economy and are abstract models of individuals or organizations which have this capacity for agency.
The Capacity to disrupt models, drive an idea and influence a generation to release their potential and gifting, channeled towards economic and national development is what drives them.
Economic agents are the most important people in a market economy, the true blood of a Single Africa trade market--and there are never enough of them.
The prognosis of the future of the AFCFTA amid a pandemic is not to bury our heads in the sand and surrender our will to a default nature of begging for aids.
Thriving through technology and digital infrastructures.
In a news reportage on Ghana web titled; “Coronavirus: Implementation of AfCFTA faces delay” on 23rd March 2020.
The first paragraph states, “Approval of phase one operational instruments required for the start of duty free trading within the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) in July this year hangs in a balance following the continuous impact of the novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) infections that has brought global activities to a standstill.
There is indeed fear, uncertainty and a crippling global economy caused by COVID-19 and to say we have a solution to the pandemic is far from the truth. Today there's a steady rise of confirmed cases in Africa which has resulted in a Lockdown of activities across the region.
But what is also true is that we can focus on what we can control like the use of technology to educate, inform and explore ways of managing the impact of the pandemic. Regarding the AFCFTA work should not stop.”
We can use the digital infrastructures but include the assistance of key technological drivers as agents in realizing our dream of birthing ‘A Single African Market’ in July.
All it takes to be a Leader of change because that is what it comes down to– Leadership.
It starts with a paradigm shift and a “Let my people go” attitude to forces within and without that keeps us as young leaders under and underdeveloped.
As an entrepreneur, a leader, whatever your call is in life, you are extremely important to your world. Your success is vital to the success of the nation. Don’t Quit!
What opportunities exist today for you to create or bring new products or services to your market that people want, need and are willing to pay for? What are your three best opportunities?
Growth has been present throughout the continent of Africa, with over one-third of African countries posting 6% or higher growth rates, and another 40% growing between 4% to 6% per year. Several international business observers have also named Africa as the future economic growth engine of the world.
With a growing number of young people, the report urges African countries to focus resources toward its young populations in order to avoid seeing them fall in a poverty trap, which could in turn breed insecurity and instability.
The AFCFTA is a vehicle which if well compelled by visionary-driven and competent leaders will turn the tide of a continent dependent on foreign aids, and a consumeristic spirit, into a continent of Economic Global Agents.
It is on this notion that the youth should emerge as an Economic agent of change.