A new report from the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the African Union says the key to long-term development in Africa is commodity-based industrialization. The study collected data mostly from nine African countries and the continent’s five sub-regions. Those countries are Algeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Zambia.
The report urges African nations to take advantage of their abundance of natural resources by using a commodity-based industrialization strategy. Each nation should frame its own specific policy for commodity-based industrialization so that it can direct its own development. This is necessary to address poverty and gender disparities, youth unemployment, and other challenges African nations faces. The report states that “massive industrialization based on commodities in Africa is imperative, possible, and beneficial.”
Instead of African nations shipping raw materials to foreign nations to make commodities which are of higher value, the report recommends adding value to raw materials locally. Not only does this increase the profit to African nations but also fosters diversification of technological capabilities, an expansion of an advantageous skills base, and deepened industrial infrastructures in individual countries.
Case studies were prepared for Algeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Zambia.
– Essee Oruma
Source: UN News Centre