Category Archives: Africa

Deputy Secretary-General Remarks at High-level event on the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa

New York, 26 September 2018

Amina New DSG Portrait

Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am pleased to join you today as we focus attention on Africa’s industrial and socio-economic development.

I am encouraged by the presence of so many high-level representatives from both the public and private sectors. This year’s event comes when Africa’s economic growth is beginning to recover after the decline witnessed in 2016. Real output growth is estimated to have increased by 3.6 percent in 2017, up from 2.2 percent in 2016, and is poised to accelerate to 4.1 percent in 2018 and 2019.

This is indeed welcome news and a reflection of the continent’s strong potential. However, despite this positive economic growth, challenges remain for the achievement of meaningful inclusive and sustainable industrial development for Africa.

The diversification of African economies through value addition is essential for sustainable growth, market resilience and withstanding economic shocks. To that end, we welcome the launch this year of the African Continental Free Trade Area. This will constitute the world’s largest free trade area in terms of membership and will also create a single market of 1.2 billion people with a combined GDP of over 2.5 trillion dollars, which is expected to double by 2050.

Sustainable industrialization is key to the success of the Free Trade Area, with an emphasis on inclusive development that harnesses the energy, drive, creativity and skills of women and youth. Within the framework of the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa, commendable efforts are being undertaken by different stakeholders, including within the United Nations.

We have a roadmap for its implementation that will form the basis for joint programmes between UN agencies and key stakeholders.  This and other achievements are captured in the progress report on the Decade that will be presented to the General Assembly.

Going forward, I would like to highlight five areas for special attention.

First, congruency between alignment and cohesive regional and industrial policies. Trade and industry policies that talk to each other are much more likely to yield positive results than those implemented in isolation.

Second, enhanced focus to investments on infrastructure development. This includes special economic zones and industrial parks; roads; ports; harbours; energy infrastructure; information and communication technologies and digital infrastructure.

Third, enhanced value addition local contacts, with a focus on agriculture and other natural resources. As the mainstay of most African countries, these hold the key for accelerated sustainable growth, diversification and job creation.

Fourth, is trade capacity building to facilitate fuller participation in regional and global value chains. Being at the table needs muscle capacity to engage and negotiate the best deals for your country.

And fifth is human capital development and technology with a focus on women and youth to ensure inclusive development.

It is also clear that the agendas set out in the Industrial Development Decade and the African Continental Free Trade Area cannot be achieved by any single entity or country.  There is need to build and strengthen partnerships among all relevant stakeholders.

Finally creating a space for these partnerships to focus on five areas mentioned and addition, encouraging technology transfer, building productive capacity, creating jobs, promoting international trade, supporting economic diversification, and building green industries.

Creative and innovative approaches must continue to be deployed to mobilize both financial and non-financial resources. Maximizing financing for development means a number of things. We must mobilize domestic resources alongside international financial resources.

We need to harness the role of the private sector in financing development. And we must maximize the use of innovative financing sources and mechanisms including pension funds, insurance and other large pools of private capital.

To do this, it is vital that we share experiences and lessons among countries. We also need to leverage and deepen strategic North-South; South-South and Triangular cooperation.

Excellencies,

Ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the United Nations, I reaffirm our continued strong commitment and action to sustainabledevelopment on the continent and ensuring an inclusive, resilient, and secure future, for all Africans.

I wish you a productive meeting.

Sécurité : les Etats membres de l’UNSAC se retrouvent à Yaoundé du 29 mai au 02 juin pour leur 44e réunion ministérielle // Security: UNSAC Member States in Yaoundé from 29 May to 02 June for their 44th Ministerial Meeting

Yaoundé (Cameroun), 27 mai 2017– La  44e réunion ministérielle du Comité consultatif permanent des Nations Unies chargé des questions de sécurité en Afrique centrale (UNSAC) aura lieu du 29 mai au 02 juin 2017 à Yaoundé, la capitale du Cameroun. Les travaux commencent avec la rencontre des experts qui, pendant trois jours, feront un état des lieux prospectif de la situation sécuritaire et géopolitique dans les onze Etats membres du Comité (Angola, Burundi, Cameroun, République centrafricaine, Congo, République démocratique du Congo, Gabon, Guinée équatoriale, Rwanda, Sao Tomé et Principe, Tchad).

Les discussions porteront sur les questions en rapport avec, entre autres, la gouvernance politique et les multiples facteurs qui menacent la paix et la stabilité de la sous-région. Les participants échangeront notamment des vues sur la dimension régionale de certaines crises, dont celle de la République centrafricaine. Ils mettront également un accent sur les voies et moyens de renforcer la lutte contre les phénomènes comme la violence armée et le terrorisme, l’insécurité maritime dans le Golfe de Guinée, le braconnage et le trafic illicite des espèces sauvages, les tensions électorales, le trafic des drogues, la criminalité transnationale organisée, la prolifération des armes légères et de petit calibre, etc.

Sur ce dernier point, il convient de souligner que la 44e réunion du Comité s’ouvrira près de trois mois après l’entrée en vigueur, le 8 mars 2017, de la Convention de l’Afrique centrale pour le contrôle des armes légères et de petit calibre, de leurs munitions et de toutes pièces et composantes pouvant servir à leur fabrication, réparation et assemblage, dite “Convention de Kinshasa” – adoptée le 30 avril 2010 lors de la 30e réunion du Comité à Kinshasa (République démocratique du Congo). Cette entrée en vigueur a été facilitée par le dépôt, le 6 février 2017, du sixième instrument de ratification par l’Angola (précédé quelques années plus tôt par le Cameroun, la République centrafricaine, le Congo, le Gabon et le Tchad).

UNOCA avait exprimé sa satisfaction par rapport à cette évolution positive à laquelle il a contribué à travers diverses actions de plaidoyer auprès des Etats membres du Comité. « Nous continuerons à soutenir les efforts de la sous-région dans sa détermination à prévenir, à combattre et à mettre fin à la circulation incontrôlée des armes en Afrique centrale », souligne M. François Louncény Fall, Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général des Nations Unies pour l’Afrique centrale et Chef de l’UNOCA, encourageant les pays qui ne l’ont pas encore fait à ratifier la Convention de Kinshasa. « Cela permettrait de renforcer davantage la confiance entre les Etats et de rassurer les populations, principales victimes de ce phénomène qui constitue par ailleurs une entrave au développement durable de l’Afrique centrale », explique-t-il.

Le Représentant spécial aura l’occasion d’évoquer cette question et bien d’autres dossiers cruciaux avec les chefs de délégation. Du 1er au 2 juin, M. François Louncény Fall prendra part à la session ministérielle dont l’un des temps forts sera la lecture, lors de la cérémonie officielle d’ouverture, du message du Secrétaire général des Nations Unies, M. António Guterres. Cette phase protocolaire sera également marquée par la mise en place d’un nouveau bureau du Comité. Le Ministre camerounais des Relations extérieures en assurera la présidence pour une durée de six mois. Il succèdera à son homologue santoméen, qui occupe ce poste depuis la 43e réunion de l’UNSAC – qui a eu lieu du 28 novembre au 02 décembre 2016 à Sao Tomé.

Mis en place le 28 mai 1992 par l’ONU (à la demande des Etats membres de la CEEAC), le Comité, dont le fonctionnement vient de faire l’objet d’une évaluation, est un précieux outil de diplomatie préventive. Conformément à l’esprit d’un des séminaires fondateurs de cette institution organisé à Yaoundé du 17 au 21 juin 1991, le Comité a en effet pour mission principale de promouvoir les mesures de confiance aux niveaux régional et sous-régional afin d’atténuer les tensions et de faire progresser le désarmement et la non-prolifération des armes légères et de petit calibre en Afrique centrale. Depuis sa création, la capitale camerounaise a déjà abrité plusieurs de ses sessions. La dernière remonte à la 26e rencontre tenue du 3 au 7 septembre 2007.

COMMUNIQUE DE PRESSE N° 125 — Sécurité — les Etats membres de l’UNSAC se retrouvent à Yaoundé du 29 mai au 2 juin pour leur 44e réunion ministérielle

PRESS RELEASE N° 125 – Security — UNSAC Member states in Yaoundé from 29 May to 02 June for their 44th Ministerial Meeting

TEXTE ET PHOTOhttps://unoca.unmissions.org/unsac-44eme-reunion-les-etats-membres-se-retrouvent-%C3%A0-yaound%C3%A9-du-29-mai-au-2-juin

A Continent of Hope By António Guterres

Far too often, the world views Africa through the prism of problems.  When I look to Africa, I see a continent of hope, promise and vast potential.  I am committed to building on those strengths and establishing a higher platform of cooperation between the United Nations and the leaders and people of Africa.  This is essential to advancing inclusive and sustainable development and deepening cooperation for peace and security.  That is the message I carried to the recent African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia — my first major mission as United Nations Secretary-General.

Above all, I came in a spirit of profound solidarity and respect.  I am convinced that the world has much to gain from African wisdom, ideas and solutions. I also brought with me a deep sense of gratitude.  Africa provides the majority of United Nations peacekeepers around the world.  African nations are among the world’s largest and most generous hosts of refugees.  Africa includes some of the world’s fastest growing economies.  

The recent resolution of the political crisis in the Gambia once again demonstrated the power of African leadership and unity to overcome governance challenges and uphold democracy, human rights and the rule of law.  I left the Summit more convinced than ever that all of humanity will benefit by listening, learning and working with the people of Africa.

We have the plans in place to build a better future.  The international community has entered the second year of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, an all-out effort to tackle global poverty, inequality, instability and injustice.  Africa has adopted its own complementary and ambitious plan: Agenda 2063.  For the people of Africa to fully benefit from these important efforts, these two agendas need to be strategically aligned.  It starts with prevention.  Our world needs to move from managing crises to preventing them in the first place.  We need to break the cycle of responding too late and too little.  

Most of today’s conflicts are internal, triggered by competition for power and resources, inequality, marginalization and sectarian divides.  Often, they are inflamed by violent extremism or provide the fuel for it.  The United Nations is committed to working hand-in-hand with partners wherever conflict or the threat of conflict endangers stability and well-being.  But prevention goes far beyond focusing solely on conflict.  The best means of prevention and the surest path to durable peace is inclusive and sustainable development.

We can speed progress by doing more to provide opportunities and hope to young people.  More than three out of five Africans are under 35 years of age.  Making the most of this tremendous asset means more investment in education, training, decent work, and engaging young people in shaping their future. We must also do our utmost to empower women so they can play a full role in sustainable development and sustainable peace.  I am pleased that the African Union has consistently placed a special focus on gender equality and women’s empowerment.  

I have seen it again and again:  When we empower women, we empower the world.  I travelled to Africa as a partner, friend and committed advocate for changing the narrative about this diverse and vital continent.  Crises represent at best a partial view.  But from a higher platform of cooperation, we can see the whole picture – one that spotlights the enormous potential and remarkable success stories in every corner of the African continent.  With that perspective, I have no doubt we can win the battle for sustainable and inclusive development which are also the best weapons to prevent conflict and suffering, allowing Africa to shine even more vibrantly and inspire the world.