politics & economy

Regional integration to unlock Africa’s potential

Wednesday, 07 Aug 2013

South Africa’s minister for the presidency Trevor Manuel said pan African organisations should be boosted and governments must implement strategic policies and be accountable to the public.

"Each African country should exploit its area of competitive advantage. This will increase intra-African trade. Sovereign perfection is not the key, we need regional economic communities," he said.

Manuel was the guest speaker at the 21st Joseph Mubiru Memorial Lecture at the Serena Kampala Hotel under the theme "Unlocking Africa’s Growth Potential; Aligning decision-making to implementation and delivery."

He pointed out that the continent should build accountable institutions, make strategic policies, diversify economically, increase industrialisation, join regional economic groups, improve the quality of education and tackle unemployment.

"We need to be the generators of our own knowledge, especially at university level. Infrastructure deficit is an area that can slow economic growth," Manuel said.

"There is vast potential in Uganda’s agricultural sector. Unlocking this potential will create a lot of wealth, power and jobs."
Maria Kiwanuka, the finance minister, noted that the public should stringently follow the use of budget funds and hold accountable those in charge of implementation.

"Reducing supply side constraints will be critical to achieving Uganda’s Vision 2040. We have the challenge of bridging the gap between planning and actual implementation delivering value for money and service delivery," she said.

Prof. Emanuel Mutebile, the Bank of Uganda governor, noted that the principles of integrity and service remain at the core of the Central Bank. He noted that macro-economic stability should ensure sustainable economic growth.

Sarah Ssewanyana, the Economic Policy Research Centre boss, noted that Ugandans must be innovative and dream big to ensure inclusive economic growth in the later years.

Credits: Samuel Sanya/In2 East Africa/The New Vision