News release for Launch in Brazzaville
Prepared by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the African Union Commission, the Economic Report on Africa (ERA) 2014 builds on the previous year’s report, which made the case for commodity-based industrialization. It calls on the continent to refocus its economic development strategies on industrialization, particularly on the means for formulating and implementing effective industrial policy.
In the past, most African countries pursued industrial policy with mixed results. It is now time to reacknowledge that state support is vital to address market failures and spur industrialization—and to institutionalize industrial policy in national and regional development strategies at the highest levels of government.
A more holistic alternative would build strong and inclusive institutions or industrial policy and ensure that they interact regularly and harmoniously. This would mean transcending blueprint approaches—where industrial policy is simply a set of non-contextual, predefined interventions—and shift towards building a set of institutions that generate processes that can address industry’s ever-changing exigencies.
The launches will serve as a platform for debating on all of these issues, especially with reference to the Congolese and Mauritian situations, given that these countries were among the eleven across Africa where first hand data was collected for the Report.