Gordhan calls for rethinking of African development trajectory

2011-06-24 09:10

The development trajectory on the African continent should be reformulated, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said today.

Speaking at Climate Investment Funds partnership forum hosted by the African Development Bank, he indicated Africa would be a key player in global growth and development in the next 20 to 30 years.

Africa within the multi-polar context was the site of new sources of demand, the site of new sources of growth, and the sight potentially even of new possibilities of innovation and experience.

“What Africa does require is that the traditional paradigms of development and funding and aid needs to be transformed,” Gordhan said.

What was required was a new formula and a new approach which linked action on climate change to genuine development for the peoples of Africa.

“For industrialisation and economic development in Africa; for genuine job creation on the African continent and skills development.

“And a systematic and urgent process that will eradicate poverty on this continent as well.

So, while we are focusing on funding and climate change issues and technology issues and related matters, let us also ask ourselves how we can, if you like, reformulate the development trajectory that we are used to on the African continent and use this an opportunity to experiment on a much broader scale to ensure that the benefits of growth and the benefits of development don’t get left with a small elite, but the billion people on the African continent in ten years time can say that as a result of interaction... they can see a real change in their lives.”

Gordhan said he firmly believed that the African continent could also be a site for research and development.

It could also be a centre for innovation, and what was required was the right kind of partnerships which would enable Africa to fulfil this particular potential.

“One of the serious challenges that all of us face is climate change and its various instruments being seen as private goods or public goods and how do we make these public goods more generally available, certainly to the must vulnerable people around the world, will be one of the many challenges that we face,” he said.

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