Sustainable Development Goals

The missing element in Africa’s industrialization agenda

29 Apr 2016 by Degol Hailu

African countries are eager to industrialize rapidly. For instance, in the African Union’s Agenda 2063, Members States cannot wait to see the day “their economies are structurally transformed to create shared growth, decent jobs and economic opportunities for all”. The African Mining Vision (AMV) would like to see “a mining sector that has become a key component of a diversified, vibrant and globally competitive industrializing African economy”. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) recently released a Report on how Africa can industrialize. The Report says: “We have a real opportunity to promote economic transformation through the industrialization process, by capitalizing on the continent’s abundant natural resources, adding value to them, while also supporting the development of infant industries.” The UNECA Report succinctly outlines the policy measures that lead to industrialization. For instance, the Report provides evidence on how today’s rich countries have used industrial policy when they were developing. How emerging countries such as Brazil and Malaysia adopted industrial polices successfully. And how developing countries such as Ethiopia and Vietnam are today pursuing vigorous industrial policies. The Report argues that, in each of the country cases, active state intervention supported the growth in manufacturing activities. The Report also emphasizes … Read more

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