The inaugural African Development Week opened in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Thursday March 31, with various speakers urging participants to engage in constructive debates that will promote Africa’s structural transformation through green industrialization.
The week, which will have highlights, including the launch of the Economic Commission for Africa’s flagship Economic Report for Africa 2016 report, began with a meeting of the committee of experts and is running under the theme “Towards and Integrated and Coherent Approach to The Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation of Agenda 2063, and the Sustainable Development Goals.”
Deliberations will, over the week, evolve around the transition from the millennium development goals (MDGs) to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Africa’s 50-year development plan; Agenda 2063.
“We will debate on how countries can adopt and implement effectively a common framework for meeting the goals of Agenda 2063 and the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development,” said Ms. Hamisi Mwinyimvua, Chair of the outgoing Bureau of the Committee of Experts and also Tanzania’s Ambassador to Ethiopia.
Commissioner for Economic Affairs at the African Union Commission, H.E. Dr. Anthony Mothae Maruping called on African countries to embrace an “integrated and coherent approach to implementation, monitoring and evaluation of Agenda 2063 and SDGs”.
“Current economic and financial challenges are spurring member states towards economic transformation,” he said as he urged member states to harmonise Agendas 2063 and 2030 for Africa`s transformation.
Deputy Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa, Mr. Abdalla Hamdok, called for constructive debate and thought provoking discussions that will lead to the formulation of strategies for the effective implementation for the continent’s collective developmental vision.
He cautioned, however, that such strategies should not only focus on expediting the promotion of strong and sustainable long term growth but also ensuring that the benefits of such growth are widely shared in order to reduce poverty and improve African’s standards of living.
Mr. Admasu Nebebe of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development of Ethiopia said the full implementation of Agenda 2063 and Agenda 2030 will improve the lives of more than one billion people on the African continent.
The expert committee, which will run until April 2nd 2016, marks the start of the African Development Week. It will be followed by the annual meetings of the Conference of the AU Ministers of Economy and Finance and the ECA Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development on 4th – 5th April.
A number of meetings will also take place during the week, including the 17th Session of the Regional Coordination Mechanism for Africa (RCM-Africa), the annual meeting of the Group of African central Bank Governors as well as more than 20 events and the presentation and launch of a dozen reports and publications, including the Economic Report on Africa (ERA 2016), the ECA country profiles, the Africa Governance Report and the evaluation of regional integration in Africa.
More than 1,000 high level delegates are expected during the African Development Week, including current and former heads of State, Central Bank Governors, and representatives of member-states, civil society, private sectors, media as well as international academics and experts and development partners.