Akinwumi Adesina has called for a shift from aid to trade in Africa, saying that aid can be converted to investment.
The President of the African Development Bank was speaking at the US-Africa Business Summit in Washington DC.
Adesina has said that a close partnership between the USA and Africa, the next investment growth frontier, is so crucial.
“Let us be great together, and I truly believe this can happen.
I was honored to have had a brief chat on this with President Trump during the G7 Summit and I agree with President Trump that Africa is a place of opportunities. I brim with optimism for Africa”, he said
He urged that Africa must now be viewed with an investment mindset, instead of the traditional development mindset.
Despite tough global economic headwinds, he said African economies are resilient due to macroeconomic stability, good governance, rising domestic demand, and increased regional trade.
According to him, Africa is buoyant, robust and her economies are doing better than the global average.
He stated that African economies are also reforming very fast, which then accounts for an increase in FDI which is expected to rise to $57.5 billion this year. According to him, Africa is still the second fastest growing destination in terms of foreign direct investments.
In his speech, he encouraged all to think of Africa when thinking of private sector investment.
“Think of a continent where household expenditures will rise to $1.4 trillion in the next three years. Think of the continent where business to business investments will rise to $3.5 trillion in the next eight years. Think of the continent where the population by 2050 will be the same as India and China taken together today. Think of the continent that will brim with huge demand from a rising youth population that will reach 840 million by 2050, all buying and owning consumer products”
Adesina also announced the launch of the Africa Investment Forum slated for the latter part of this year. The Forum would be a transactional Forum to unlock global and regional institutional investors to Africa.