Foreword by President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete
Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania, Member of the Africa Commission
A little more than a year ago I received an invitation from the Danish Prime Minister to join the Africa Commission. What prompted me to accept was what I considered to be the highly relevant mandate of the Commission.
I welcomed the Commission’s focus on the youth and its strong emphasis on sustainable growth and entrepreneurship. And I was encouraged by the fact that the Commission from the outset intended to find African solutions to African challenges.
I am pleased to note that immense efforts have been carried out in order to involve African stakeholders throughout the process, and I fully support the recommendations and initiatives presented in this report.
The Africa Commission is setting a new agenda for international development cooperation with Africa. We are advocating a shift in focus towards enterprise-led development in Africa: Aid in itself will not ensure sustainable development. Improving Africa’s competitiveness will.
Now Africa is confronted with a global financial crisis that has its origin in the world’s richest countries. It threatens the hard-won gains made by African countries over the past decade. Investments are declining. Businesses are struggling to survive. And jobs are lost. The urgency with which Africa and its development partners need to act has never been greater.
Africa’s excessive dependency on development aid is not sustainable. Africa and its partners must focus on job creation through improving competitiveness, by combating
corruption, adding more and better post-primary education and skills training based on private sector demand, providing access to investment capital, better energy supply as well as basic infrastructure.
These are just some of the views presented in this report. They are not all new. But I sincerely hope that they will inspire decision makers across the continent and abroad. The Government of Tanzania will actively pursue a policy that is consistent with these recommendations.
The Africa Commission has been an important platform for finding effective means of improving job opportunities for young Africans. We share a common goal of building societies where all young people have a prosperous future, and we want to put employment higher on the international agenda. The work of the Africa Commission is an important step in this direction.
Dar es Salaam, May 2009
This page forms part of the publication 'Realising the Potential of Africa’s Youth' as chapter 3 of 25
Version 1.0. 09-06-2009
Publication may be found at the address http://www.netpublikationer.dk/um/9336/index.htm