The United Nations has published the Economic Development in Africa Report 2011 in which it urges African nations to step up its manufacturing sector in order to reduce widespread poverty on the continent.
As of 2011, Africa only accounts for one percent of global manufacturing. This has led United Nations officials to conclude that widespread poverty cannot be reduced in Africa unless these numbers are reversed.
In a report by the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the UN Conference on Trade Development (UNCTAD) published Monday entitled “The Economic Development in Africa Report 2011,” officials called for a “practical, well-designed” approach to enhancing Africa’s industrial sector and governments’ role in this process.
The report continued to state that Africa is not gaining any momentum in the manufacturing sector, which is crucial because a strong majority of African nations’ citizens need jobs. Strategies must be implemented through a government and business partnership, says the report.
In order for private companies to invest in the area and provide important long-term economic growth, governments at all levels must support the businesses. However, if these companies do not maintain a good level of performance, then the government must end its support.
“In the past, government intentions for industry have often not matched the practical conditions experienced by domestic firms and entrepreneurs,” the agencies stated in a news release. “To know what is possible, more consultation is needed with manufacturers or prospective manufacturers.
“On the other side, government research into possible fields for industrial development may provide useful information to entrepreneurs that enable them to see new opportunities.”
The report also notes there are other factors related to economic success. Some of these “key ingredients” include cooperative relations with neighboring nations, rational macroeconomic policies, stable monetary and fiscal measures and political stability because frequent policy revisions can hinder business.