APP | 25 May 2010 | français
Africa Progress Report calls on African leaders to turn “scramble for Africa” into real results for the continent; progress being made despite not because of governance
Panel wants action from policymakers to translate continent’s “immense resources” into concrete benefits for its people
Johannesburg - 25 May 2010: The Africa Progress Report launched today by the Africa Progress Panel (APP) states that African leaders need to boost “political determination and capacity to use what revenues they have to achieve results for people”.
Kofi Annan, Chair of the Panel and fellow Panel members Linah Mohohlo, Peter Eigen and Olusegun Obasanjo presented the Africa Progress Report on Africa Day – five years since the establishment of the Panel and 10 years since world leaders signed up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The report takes stock of Africa’s progress since 2005 and assesses future opportunities for the continent.
“This landmark report argues that Africa’s future is in its own hands, but that success in managing its own affairs depends on supportive global policies and agreements,” Annan said. “There is no lack of resources, no deficiency of knowledge and no shortage of plans. Africa’s progress rests above all else on the mobilisation of political will, both on the continent and internationally.”
The Report, focusing on Africa’s emergence as a “new economic frontier”, notes that economic engagement with the Global South - China, the Far and Middle East, South Asia and Latin America - “is already having a substantial development impact on Africa”. However, the report asserts that “Africans beyond elite circles are not benefiting sufficiently” while at the same time “there is great scope to improve Africa’s partnerships with the Global South”. The report also notes that “African leaders... need to realize that the benefits of increasing economic ties are not automatic, but only accrue to those that take adequate and pro-active steps to exploit them through targeted policies.”
In particular, the report calls for:
The Panel also identifies three priority areas for action for Africa’s partners, recording that Africa’s leaders “need an international environment that is fair and supportive of their efforts.” The report calls for international policymakers to:
Focusing on the approximately $100billion of financial assistance in annual expenditure from Africa’s partners required to achieve the Millennium Development Goals in the presence of anticipated climate change, the report records that “much of this could actually be met if partners were to fulfil the pledges they made over the last couple of years and realize the financing ambitions outlined in the Copenhagen Accord.” It notes that “the mechanisms to collect, administer, and disburse these funds are already in place.”
Looking back on Africa’s progress over the last five years, the report describes it as “a truly mixed picture.” It states that “remarkable progress has been achieved in many fields, but... a number of set-backs, chronic problems and the effects of the global economic crisis and climate change combine to threaten the gains made since 2005.”
The Africa Progress Report highlights that the central challenge for Africa’s leaders is to inspire processes and build practical capacities, both nationally and regionally, to ensure that assets are translated into social benefits and that their people are able to access opportunities that can transform their lives, countries, and continent.
The Africa Progress Panel brings together a unique group of leaders under the chairmanship of Kofi Annan. The Panel monitors and promotes mutual accountability and shared responsibility for progress in Africa. Its three focus areas are economic and political governance; finance for sustainable development, including ODA; and MDG achievement – notably in light of climate change. The work of the Panel aims to track progress and draw attention to critical issues and opportunities for progress in Africa.
The Africa Progress Panel is comprised of: