[BLOG] The new Africa Strategy 2012
By Isaac Twumasi-Quantus In Accra.
It is about time representative African ambassadors across the world over would want to build on and strengthen their already deep bonds of friendship in a way that reflects the new realities of Africa, the continent of the future.
That Africa can move forward together, enriching and laying the groundwork for the development of a strong new economic relationship in the years to come. A relationship with far greater emphasis on trade and investment. 2012 should be a testimony to the strong bonds that already exist.
For many years, the conventional wisdom was that positive change would never happen in Africa; that it was a continent doomed to autocracy, inequality and grinding underdevelopment. But one thing we have to take note of in our lifetimes is that no country or region is immune to political, economic and social change, and that the effects of that change in one region can have major implications for others. After years of apparent stability on the surface, change can often come unexpectedly.
The communications revolution has opened up dramatic new opportunities. There is a growing middle class in many African countries. Africans are building trade with each other and with the world, and business opportunities are opening up. I recognise that huge challenges remain, that corruption and human rights abuses persist, that high growth rates do not automatically end poverty and can widen inequalities, and that poverty, drought, population growth and renewed conflict can easily set back apparently dramatic progress. But the reality is that many African countries are developing the capacity to mobilise domestic resources to drive their own development.
Our future lies in our capacity to trade: to sell goods and services, in the global economy. To do so, we must expand our horizons beyond our traditional export markets. The centre of gravity in the global economy is shifting towards the emerging economies and beyond them to Africa.
More than ever we are inextricably connected into global trading systems, global communications networks, and worldwide markets.
At its core, I am are saying in our new approach that Africa will engage more with counterparts, and, most importantly, that the counterparts will listen more to the voices the people of Africa.
Indeed 2011 was a great year, looking forward to a greater 2012!
Happy New Year!
This article was originally posted on West Africa Business Communities