The first 10 year plan of Agenda 2063 is concrete and has reached an implementation phase.
This was according to Commissioner for Economic Affairs, Dr Anthony Mothae Maruping, at an AU Summit briefing earlier today.
Agenda 2063 is both a vision and an action plan. It is a call for action to all segments of African society to work together to build a prosperous and united Africa based on shared values and a common destiny. It is aimed at ensuring positive socioeconomic transformation within the next 50 years.
Maruping said the current goal of a 4.5 to 5 per cent is “good, but not good enough”. For African countries to be steady, they need a growth rate of 7 per cent in the real economy.
Maruping highlighted that successive measures have been taken to ensure that this agenda is integrated into domestic national development plans.
Amongst these initiatives, the commission held consultations with planning experts who critically reviewed the targets, baselines and discussed proposals for funding.
“The time has come for Africa to undertake the financing for its own development,” said Maruping.
He emphasised that, “Things are already happening on the ground.” Eleven flagship projects were cited by Maruping to have already taken flight. He shared the progress of the Inga Dam Hydroelectric Project confirming that South Africa and Nigeria have already signed to buy energy.
Further, the Pan African E-university has an increasing number of students and there are firm talks of regulating the “ease of movement in Africa” and extending that to the entire continent amid other flagship plans.
“I’m very optimistic, this is a different ball game,” said Maruping. He substantiated that his reasons are that firstly, Agenda 2063 was a participatory effort with the people; the commission employed a top-down approach.
“This symphony was composed by the people,” he said.
Secondly, capacity gaps and accountability frameworks were previously not done and now they will be monitored to plug in the gaps. Thirdly, significant attention is given to mobilise funding.
“Risk exists, what matters is how manage risk so it doesn’t frustrate efforts,” Maruping reassured. On this point Maruping said there are careful strategies in place to manage risks.
With regards to the issue of the “Silencing of Guns” in 2020, Maruping responded that, “Peace is an enabler, there has to be stability for growth to take place.”
While there is stand-by force, as one of the flagships, the commissioner said they hope it will be needed “less and less” because the objective is to prevent, not extinguish fires.