Bawumia Charges Africa  Business Gurus To Invest In smart Infrastructure 

The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has urged the African Business community to prioritise investment in smart infrastructure in a bid to fast-track industrialization on the continent.
According to him, “There is the need for smart investment in critical infrastructure, as a continent, we need to produce and trade our way out of poverty and underdevelopment, and we cannot do that without investing in smart infrastructure across the continent’’.
Dr. Bawumia said while speaking at the official opening of the Africa Prosperity Dialogues at the Safari Valley Resort at Adukrom in the Okere District of the Eastern Region on Thursday, 26 January, 2023.
He charged the Africa business owner to take bold steps to reduce poverty, adding that such investments will be critical to delivering the success of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
He explained that “While the last decades have seen some positive investment, there is the need for additional resources to finance the arteries for trade, which include the physical infrastructure such as roads, rail and energy, digital infrastructure such as data centres and financial infrastructure to allow for integration of our financial markets’’.
Dr Bawumia said the Africa Prosperity Dialogues has been organised as a solution-driven initiative to fast-track the implementation of the AfCFTA and added that this is the best time for African businesses to dialogue on smart ways for the development of the continent.
“This event has been organised as a solution-driven initiative to fast-track the implementation of the AfCFTA. This is the time for businesses to dialogue on smart ways to enjoy the opportunities from the engrained for the resilience, sustainable, inclusive and prosperous Africa.
“For most parts of the world, the narrative for this beautiful continent has sadly been about poverty, conflict, misgovernment corruption and underdevelopment.”
He added that “the time has come for Africa and Africans to define our own narrative. We cannot allow poverty and undevelopment to be the destiny of Africa. A continent so blessed with every natural resource imaginable-oil, minerals gas and sunshine.”
Bawumia said the AfCFTA is real a game-changer and once fully realised “we increase intra-Africa trade by some US$35 billion and reduce external import by some US$10 billion annually. This will mean an opportunity for growth and for our small businesses and the potential to lift more than three million people from poverty.
He said the AfCFTA has set the stage for Africa’s industrialisation drive but “it will take concrete strategic action by governments and businesses on the continent the right mix of policies, a greater sense of purpose for a more robust intra-Africa trade to happen to support economic diversification and the much-needed industrialisation of the continent.
The maiden series of the Africa Prosperity Dialogues kicked off on Thursday, 26 January and will end on Saturday, 28 January.
The Africa Prosperity Dialogues are symbolically dubbed the Kwahu Summit because the Kwahu people of Ghana, the host nation, represent entrepreneurship and trade and are known to support each other excel in business. Kwahu is also the highest habitable elevation in Ghana.
The organisers of the Kwahu Summit aim to support, by building enhanced intra-African trade, the elevation of Africa and her people to the highest summit of human living, dignity and prosperity.
The 2023 Africa Prosperity Dialogues is the first of what will be an annual event. The Dialogues are being organised by the Africa Prosperity Network (APN) and partners, which include the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, sited in Ghana, the Presidency of the Republic of Ghana.
Other partners are the United Nations Development Programme (Africa), the Africa Prosperity Fund, the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the Africa-America Institute.
The Kwahu Summit will be a pan-African economic platform which brings together the great minds and might of Africa, both in Africa and the diaspora, to think, plan and work together to expedite implementation of the agreed initiatives within the AfCFTA and to shape the Africa Agenda for Action.
BY Daniel Bampoe