The beginning of the 21th century has shown promising figures regarding the economic growth of the African continent. The World Bank’s 2013 Economic Report on Africa; with the theme- Making the Most of Africa’s Commodities: Industrializing for Growth, Jobs and Economic Transformation- rightly tells the continent’s notable economic performance with its own remarks on limitations of the growth to be translated into jobs and social development.


Africa’s economy remained strong to register a 5.0 pct growth in 2012. The region’s economic growth was reported to be promising as it came amidst slowing world economy. Africa’s economic growth has benefited from the improving political unrest in the northern region of the continent, elections were hold and normal business activities have begun to return in Egypt and Libya.

Number of people who will be living in extreme poverty in Sub Saharan Africa by 2015, which will be 42.3 percent of the region’s total population. The number was 289.7 million in 1990, 56.5 pct of the population of the time, according to a Global Monitoring Report 2013, jointly produced by the World Bank and the International Monitory Fund.


Said Vandana Chandra, a senior economist at the World Bank referring to the growing trend of rural-urban migration that followed as a result of reducing poverty rate in urban areas of Africa and the world in general. The Economist made the remark on an event organized in Addis Abeba University (AAU)’s Eshetu Cholle Hall on May 8, 2013 for the launching of the 2013 Global Monitoring Report (GMR), which was compiled by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.


Recently, South Africa has condemned The UK’s decision to stop giving aid to the country beginning in 2015. South African Finance Minister, Pravin Gordham criticized Britain’s decision saying “This is such a major decision, with far-reaching implications on the projects that are currently running, and it is tantamount to redefining our relationship.” This response given by the richest economy in the continent with four hundred something billions of dollars in GDP about the stoppage of a lousy thirty million dollar aid can be a good example how Africa is addicted to aid.


Pan Africanism and its modern version, African Renaissance are popular themes in contemporary African discourse. The year 2013, declared as the year of Pan Africanism and African Renaissance, marks the 50th anniversary celebration of the formation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU), now the African Union (AU). What does Pan Africanism and African Renaissance really mean and what are the prospects for their consolidation in the future? Let us start with understanding Pan Africanism and then the link between the two.


Located far from Africa’s Atlantic shore, where international slavery flourished, Ethiopia did not play a part in this sad saga. Nevertheless, it has acquired a symbolic, religious and racial symbolism and has featured prominently in the collective thoughts and social practices of black people in the Americas. The term Ethiopia first travelled to the Americas on slave ships, in the hands of missionaries and the Holy Bible in its first official English version, the King James Version, published in 1611. In the Bible, Ethiopia represents a territory (Genesis 2:13), a race (Jeremiah 13:23), and a people chosen by God (Amos 9:7). The verse most often used to illustrate the prophetic destiny of Ethiopia is “Ethiopia shall stretch forth her hands unto God” (Psalm 68:31).

Africa is at the threshold of a new era and a fitting vision set to help Africa navigate through the 21st century-Vision 2063 is in the offing.

The seeds for the 50 year plan to create a prosperous and peaceful Africa were planted during the 6th Annual Meeting of the Ministers of Economy, Finance and Economic Development meeting in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, in March 2013. This plan also involved the African Development Bank and Economic Commission for Africa.


Even with so many promising stories about Africa, it should come as no surprise to hear one about underachievement on the macro level. Africa still drags its feet when competing with the rest of the world. A report recently released by the World Economic Forum entitled- Reducing Barriers to Economic Growth and Job Creation- evaluated world economies’ travel and tourism competitiveness and revealed that many African countries are lagging behind, as always.

Ethiopian Business Review | EBR is a first-class and high-quality monthly business magazine offering enlightenment to readers and a platform for partners.

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