Business News of Wednesday, 23 May 2018
The African Development Bank and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) have jointly appended signatures to a Memorandum of Understanding to step up their existing collaboration to stimulate the industrialization agenda of African economies.
The event would spiral into establishing a framework that defines mutual collaboration and financing arrangements on relevant joint activities.
The MOU aligns to the Bank’s High fives strategy and the African Union’s Agenda 2063, the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, as well as the G20 Initiative on Supporting Industrialization in Africa.
It also clarifies joint activities and funding arrangements and introduces a work programme together with consultation and review mechanisms.
“The Bank launched in 2016 its Industrialization Strategy for Africa 2016-2025, which was the outcome of collaborative work with UNIDO and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.
Dr Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank Group, said the signing of the present MoU was key to the Bank’s Strategy’s implementation and a potential game-changer.”
“The Bank already benefits enormously from UNIDO’s expertise in developing policies, programmes and knowledge tools which support our member countries to industrialize.”
In 2017, the Bank allocated US$1.2 billion to Industrialize Africa – one of the Bank’s High five development priorities – mostly to projects for financial sector operations.
The new agreement facilitates the Bank and UNIDO cooperation on joint activities of shared interest in areas such as agro-industry development, circular economy, eco-industrial parks, investment in innovation and technology, enterprise development, trade and capacity-building, and access to finance, among others.
Mr Philippe Scholtes, Managing Director of UNIDO, said: “Achieving Africa’s industrial potential will not happen by chance; strong partnerships such as the one our two organizations have now formalized are key.”
“This partnership will create significant opportunities and facilitate our work together towards the operationalization of IDDA III (2016–2025)”.
He said the unit was a specialized agency that was mandated to promote industrialization development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalization and environmental sustainability.
He said its objectives fully recognize in the SDG to build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusiveness and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation, creating shared prosperity, advancing economic competitiveness, safeguarding the environment, strengthening knowledge and institutions.
He said it envisaged boosting intra-regional trade to scale beyond the 16 percent mark attained previously by developing human capital based on vocational skills training by adding value to manufactural and processing commodities to open up the rural setting.