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ICEA 2017: PRESIDENTS ALASSANE OUATTARA, MACKY SALL, HELEN JONHSON SIRLEAF AND ALPHA CONDE EXPOUND THEIR VISION OF THE EMERGENCE OF AFRICA

  
  
28 / 03 / 2017

 

ICEA 2017: ABIDJAN, CAPITAL OF EMERGENCE FROM 28 TO 30 MARCH. The second edition of the International Conference on the Emergence of Africa (ICAE) began in the Ivorian economic capital on Tuesday (March 28). Opened in the presence of the President of the Republic, His Excellency Alassane Ouattara and his hosts, Macky Sall of Senegal, Helen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia and Alpha Condé of Guinea, this second edition is devoted to the implementation of the plans for emergence. It also aims to deepen the debate on their implementation in the light of the Sustainable Development Goals, Agenda 2063 of the African Union and the experiences in Africa and elsewhere.

Thus, the opportunity was used by the various Heads of State to share their secrets to achieve emergence. For President Alassane Ouattara, the quest for emergence cannot be undertaken without a firm political will to launch the necessary structural reforms.

He said that the implementation of these reforms may be difficult, but it is up to the authorities to demonstrate commitment and explain their merits to the people.

Moreover, African populations should take greater ownership of the concept of emergence because, as the Ivorian Head of State said, they must be the engine of this emergence. The Ivorian President further underlined that behavior change must be a reality in African countries, as a vital condition for the achievement of emergence.

This change of behavior must be the engine of economic development, he insisted. His Senegalese counterpart, Macky Sall, said the same thing, believing that emergence is not only a matter of infrastructure projects to be executed but also has to do, above all, with change in habit.

According to him, these changes are those that generate the most reluctance and resistance among the people, thus hampering development. He then called for change in economic governance in order to provide more flexibility to African states in their quest for funds geared to development projects.

To this end, he wished for more flexible financing conditions for development projects, while complying with the rules of good governance. However, President Macky, who initiated the Emergent Senegal Plan (for Senegal to be an emerging country by 2035) did not shy away from the fact that "the march towards emergence requires not only a good pace but also perseverance in the effort".



Until this phase of development is achieved, which means increased well-being for the populations, the Head of the Senegalese State called for the urgent needs to be met, especially those of the most deprived people and for the opening up of isolated rural areas.
This is one of the conditions for the consolidation of the foundations of development, the President of the Republic of Senegal added.


For his part, President Alpha Condé invited his peers to focus on youth employment. As President-in-Office of the African Union, he deplored the exodus of thousands of young Africans to Europe owing to the lack of opportunities on the continent.

In his view, therefore, the major challenges facing the continent are the transformation of the African economy and society and the need to increase investments for more growth.