President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday that radical economic transformation would take South Africa and the rest of the African economies on the path to inclusive growth and a better life for all.
“Moves are already under way to radically transform the African economy. Infrastructure development remains top of the agenda to ease the movement of goods, people and services across Africa. Also critical is the work that is being done to promote regional integration and intra-Africa trade,” Zuma said.
“In our region SADC, we have decided to prioritise industrialisation especially through labour intensive manufacturing to promote job creation. Other focus areas include agriculture in order to improve food security and also to begin to derive more value from the ocean, through boosting the ocean economy. These are areas that many investors would find lucrative on the African continent.”
Zuma was speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa in Durban, which is held until Friday under the theme, “Achieving Inclusive Growth through Responsive and Responsible Leadership”.
He said WEF on Africa presented an opportunity to vigorously discuss issues of economic growth and development, in light of the fact that growth opportunities should not just benefit a few.
Zuma said for Africa to succeed, governments needed to appropriate financing, invest in developing local capital markets, and mobilise domestic resources through taxation and other means.
He said one of the most important actions that were critical for Africa in sourcing finance was to arrest illicit financial flows.
“Billions are taken out of Africa each year, and this is money that should be used to fund our development,” Zuma said.
“We are encouraged by the work done by the Financial Action Task Force. One of the recommendations of the Task Force is that countries should identify, assess and understand the money laundering and terrorist financing risk for the country and that countries should take action. This is of absolute importance.”
– African News Agency (ANA)