Brazzaville, 12 June 2014 (ECA) – “The Economic Report on Africa 2014 will help the Congolese Government to achieve the objectives it has laid out for the country’s drive towards industrialisation for the benefit of its people” said Mr Bruno Jean Richard Itoua, Congo’s Minister of Scientific Research and Innovation, today. Mr Itoua was speaking at the launch, in Brazzaville, of the Report, jointly published by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the African Union (AU).
Mr Itotua, who presided over the event on behalf of his country’s Minister of State in Charge of Industry and Private Sector Promotion – Mr Isidore Mvouba, noted that Congo needs to plug current policy gaps and establish veritable instruments to set up and execute its industrial policy. He went on to enjoin experts charged with designing a programme for the country’s industrial take-off to study the report in order to take into translate its conclusions and recommendations into national policy actions.
Noting to Congolese experts that the contribution of the secondary sector to their country’s GDP was less than 10%, the Resident Coordinator of the UN System and Resident Representative of UNDP in Congo, Mr Anthony Ohemeng-Boamah, called on them to take stock of the recommendations of the Report to perfect their strategy for industrial development. In this regard, he highlighted the Report’s call for the establishment of efficient industrial policy institutions and the importance of very high-level policy coordination.
These messages were put in detailed perspective by the Director of the Sub-regional Office for Central Africa of ECA, Mr Emile Ahohe, who once again underlined the emphasis that the Commission has been placing of late on the need for Africa to transform itself via industrialisation in order to guarantee a the sustainability of of Africa’s current growth trajectory.
In his discursive review of the Report, the Dean of the Faculty of Economic Sciences at the Marien Ngouabi University in Brazzaville pointed out that African countries need to do more specific needs anticipation as they formulate their industrial policies. He added that “real industrialization is one that focuses on the manufacturing sector, rather than one that focuses on the extractive industries, which seems to be the current focus of our [African] countries.”
More discussions on the Economic Report on Africa 2014 have been planned for events during coming weeks in other capital cities in Central Africa, notably in Libreville – Gabon and in Yaounde – Cameroon.