The event, with the theme forging inclusive growth and creating jobs, will be held from the 7- 9 May 2014 in Abuja Nigeria, will bring the attention of the world to the west African state.
“One thing we can expect is a huge amount of interest in Nigeria. For one thing, we have a lot of global organisations, heads of states from across Africa and further off that will be coming to Abuja in May for this three days meeting,” Oliver Cann, Associate Director, Media Relations World Economic Forum told CNBC Africa.
This is the first time the forum is being hosted in West Africa, thus attracting substantial interest from around the globe. Last year, the forum was held in Cape Town by South Africa and the year before, it was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
“For a fact, Africa is the fastest growing continent on the world and western Africa is the fastest growing sub region in Africa so there’s a huge amount of interest. I also think a lot of businesses are thinking about how they can be part of this growth story, invest in Africa and how can they can make the biggest difference to help drive the transformation we are seeing in the continent right now,” he explained.
Cann believes that this is such an important time for Nigeria to host the event because the country is becoming a growth hub and the opportunities within it are becoming more visible.
“I think for us the fact that when we measure our global competitiveness report every year, we always take note of the fact that Nigeria has a huge dynamic internal market place which in itself is a great driver for economic growth and for driving competiveness,” he said.
Nigeria is listed amongst the ‘MINT’ countries alongside Mexico, Indonesia and Turkey as the emerging market economies likely to grow rapidly over the next decade, creating genuine interest and making the timing impeccable.
“I don’t want to be subject or guilty of hype but there’s unprecedented levels of interest in Africa this year…. In terms of across Africa, I believe we had twice as many African heads of states in Davos this year than we’ve had in previous years,” he added.