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World Economic Forum on Africa

Capitalizing on Opportunity
Cape Town, South Africa 4-6 June 2008

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Summary: Capitalizing on Opportunity

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Re-engineering Growth

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Unfinished Business

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Innovate or Perish

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Partnerships without Borders

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Licence to Lead

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As many of those present were aware, this year’s meeting for 10 years or more. They were honoured by
World Economic Forum on Africa was our 18th year of Klaus Schwab, who presented a commemorative gift
activity in Africa. It is a continued honour for us to to each member. A session called “Coming of Age”
maintain the trust of the community and to contribute saw interaction between some of the community’s
to shaping the agenda in the current atmosphere of veterans and several newcomers on the
collaboration, opportunity and partnership. achievements, commitments and aspirations that we
share and on what more can be done to improve the
The 2008 World Economic Forum on Africa focused community’s effectiveness.
on the power of leadership to bridge the gap between
the region’s challenges and opportunities. In keeping We would especially like to thank our meeting Co-
with a trend begun a few years ago, the greater Chairs, who were instrumental in helping us to shape
diversity of both the African and non-African leaders this year’s agenda: Aliko Dangote, President and
present meant that we could do more. We explored Chief Executive Officer, Dangote Group, Nigeria; E.
opportunities in more depth and tackled several Neville Isdell, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer,
difficult conversations on the challenges facing the The Coca-Cola Company, USA; Wendy Luhabe,
region. We were particularly encouraged by the spirit Chairperson, Industrial Development Corporation,
of openness and partnership evident in the South Africa; Sadako Ogata, President, Japan
discussions. International Cooperation Agency, Japan; and Sultan
Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman, Dubai World,
We view this year’s deliberations as further United Arab Emirates.
confirmation, if more were needed, that Africa’s
stakeholders are ready to come together to ensure We expect this 18th meeting nurtured the friendships,
that the region takes advantage of the opportunities at insight and conviction needed to improve the state of
hand. We witnessed a more confident community, one the region.
keen to assert its place on the global stage, one that
has come of age.
Adeyemi Babington-Ashaye
Among this year’s many highlights was the inaugural Associate Director, Acting Head of Africa
Africa Circle – a private gathering of members of the
community who have participated in our Africa

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Summary: Capitalizing on Opportunity

“The opportunities, threats and “It would be very important if we
challenges Africans face require strong manage our resources and the wealth
partnerships among government, they generate so they produce the
business and civil society. They also advances we need.”
require strong African cooperation and
engagement with the world.” Thabo Mbeki, President of South Africa

Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World
Economic Forum capitalize on the drivers of growth. Africans, said
Bingu Wa Mutharika, President of Malawi, “need to
When more than 800 business, government and civil change mindset from ‘afro-pessimism’ to ‘afro-
society leaders from 50 countries met in Cape Town optimism’.” Africa, he added, “is probably the richest
for the 18th World Economic Forum on Africa, the continent in the world but the people are the poorest.
optimism generated by yet another year of strong Let us recognize that we have all the wealth to enable
economic growth in the continent was evident. “Africa us to transform our continent and people from poverty
is becoming an interesting and exciting investment to prosperity.”
destination,” said Maria Ramos, Group Chief
Executive of Transnet, South Africa. Thabo Mbeki, The meeting began with an interactive brainstorming
President of South Africa, commented, “There really session during which participants identified the major
has been progress in addressing the issue of peace drivers of change that Africa needs to be most
and stability and democratization. This process is prepared for in the next 12 months. A similar survey
irreversible.” Added his Ghanaian counterpart John had previously been conducted among the general
Agyekum Kufuor: “The opportunities for Africa are public. The participants’ overwhelming choice:
immense.” education and skills development. “There is a gap
between the skills of those in school and the jobs they
The sense of achievement, however, was tempered by would aspire to fill,” remarked Sadako Ogata,
the shared appreciation that the going will only get President of the Japan International Cooperation
tougher, given the slowdown in the global economy Agency and a Co-Chair of the meeting. The other top
and rising energy and food prices. Nonetheless drivers of change ranked by the group were: visionary
participants chose to remain resolute and to look leadership, economic growth, robust infrastructure
forward for ways in which Africa can bridge the gap and food security (see Figure 1). The brainstorming
between the challenges and opportunities and

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Figure 1: Africa Economic Brainstorming

Results of the public vote on the Drivers of Change Results of the participants’ vote at the Africa meeting on the Drivers of Change
that will most impact Africa in the next 12 months that will most impact Africa in the next 12 months

session nurtured an appetite for solutions and for By identifying education and skills development as the
action that permeated the rest of the meeting as key priority, participants highlighted the need for Africa
leaders joined interactive discussions to explore to develop new leaders ready for a more competitive
several of these issues in more depth. and closely interconnected world where collaboration,
innovation and entrepreneurship are the necessary
tools of success. “Business needs to join with
government and civil society to improve skills,”
advised E. Neville Isdell, Chairman and Chief Executive
Officer of The Coca-Cola Company. Public-private
partnerships are essential to addressing the skills
deficit in Africa, Ogata said.

Indeed, “the opportunities, threats and challenges
Africans face require strong partnerships among
government, business and civil society,” said Klaus
Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the
World Economic Forum. “They also require strong
"It's important to diagnose the African cooperation and engagement with the world.”
legislative framework of countries that As Aliko Dangote, President and Chief Executive
Officer of the Dangote Group of Nigeria and a Co-
stand in the way of women so we can
Chair of the meeting, added: “Progress will not
change it to provide an enabling happen by accident. There is much work to do and by
environment for all to lead better lives." collaborating we will have a greater impact.”

Linah Mohohlo, Governor of the Bank of Botswana;
Member, Africa Gender Parity Group
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“Business needs to join with “Unless we get leaders that see beyond
government and civil society to improve the divides that the [colonial] system
skills.” left us, very likely we will move one step
forward and two steps backwards.”
E. Neville Isdell, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer,
The Coca-Cola Company, USA; Co-Chair of the World Economic
Forum on Africa John Agyekum Kufuor, President of Ghana

In stressing the need for strong leadership, require. The world is coming to Africa. China and
participants acknowledged that for too long much of India, for example, have made relations with the region
Africa’s ability to prosper was impeded by poor a strategic priority. And the 2010 FIFA World Cup will
governance. But rather than blame colonial rule for be a major opportunity for South Africa and its
their ills, new African leaders are taking responsibility neighbours to showcase the enormous progress that
for their actions and opening up their governance the continent has achieved. There will surely be
practice to scrutiny and open criticism. “Unless we get dividends, but as Colin Coleman, Chief Executive
leaders that see beyond the divides that the [colonial] Officer of Goldman Sachs in South Africa put it, “It is
system left us, very likely we will move one step up to us to see what we do with it.”
forward and two steps backwards,” said President
Kufuor. The continent must find its role in the global village,
said President Mutharika of Malawi. “This is a question
This shift in mindset is critically important at a time that we have glossed over but yet is so fundamental.
when Africa’s abundance of natural resources could We have a role to play in the global arena.” That role is
prove to be the key to unlocking the wealth that its for Africans alone to shape, he concluded. “Nobody
people deserve, riches that must be managed will develop Africa for us.”
properly, transparently and efficiently to ensure that
growth is delivered equitably. “It would be very The 2008 meeting was organized under five sub-
important if we manage our resources and the wealth themes: “Re-engineering Growth”, “Unfinished
they generate so they produce the advances we Business”, “Innovate or Perish”, “Partnerships without
need,” Mbeki told participants. Borders”, and “Licence to Lead”. Within these sub-
themes, the agenda examined Africa’s challenges and
Above all, it is important that Africans themselves take opportunities, and the capacity for leadership to
action, make the choices and find the solutions they bridge the gap between them.

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Africa Circle

In an exclusive gathering, leaders who have participated Antonio A. Matos (13), Lynda Chalker (12), Maria Ramos
in 10 or more of the World Economic Forum’s Africa (12), Simba H. Makoni (11) and Abel Mkandawire (10).
meetings were honoured. Leading the classification,
Thabo Mbeki and Trevor Manuel have both been present Klaus Schwab thanked members for their trust and
at 17 of the Forum’s 18 Africa meetings. loyalty. He gave each a commemorative gift and asked
the community to stay engaged as the region enters a
Other leaders, with the number of meetings to which new age.
they have contributed, include: Bertram Lubner (16),

Re-engineering Growth Unfinished Business

While Africa has enjoyed strong economic growth in Business as usual will never be enough. What will it
recent years, spreading peace, stability and better take to bring the business environment up to global
governance, the downturn in the global economy and standards?
rising food and energy prices will make the going
much tougher. This sub-theme explored the need to • Governments alone do not have the capacity to
overcome investment and infrastructure bottlenecks to devise or deliver the solutions. Business clearly has
keep growth on track. a role to play.
• Of special focus should be ways to tap the
• African countries should address deficiencies in spending and investing power of those at the
agriculture to increase productivity and empower bottom of the economic pyramid.
small farmers. • The agriculture sector should be a key priority,
• It is critical for African economies to diversify by particularly for banks which need to find creative
developing higher value-added products and ways to make it easier for small farmers to access
services to allow Africans to gain more value from capital.
their economy. • Public-private partnerships can be an important
• More investment is needed in infrastructure to vehicle to unlock growth in key sectors.
develop supply chains and improve efficiency. • Climate change, water management, technology
• Public-private partnerships are necessary to develop and the African diaspora could also prove to be
education and skills to build capacity. important sources of opportunities for new
• Deeper regional integration is essential to attract investment.
more investment and create market power.

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From left to right: JaimeMoralesCarazo, Vice-President of Nicaragua; EliasAntonio Saca, President of El Salvador; Patrick Manning, PrimeMinister of Trinidad and
Tobago; Susan L. Segal, President and Chief ExecutiveOfficer, Council of theAmericas, USA; Manuel Zelaya Rosales, President of Honduras; ¡lvaro Colom Caballeros,
“There clearly is a crisis of leadership “Progress will not happen by accident.
not just in Africa but in the world.” There is much work to do and by
collaborating we will have a greater
Wendy Luhabe, Chairperson, Industrial Development impact.”
Corporation, South Africa; Co-Chair of the World Economic
Forum on Africa
Aliko Dangote, President and Chief Executive Officer, Dangote
Group, Nigeria; Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum on
Innovate or Perish

From disruptive business models to new frontier Partnerships without Borders
technologies, innovation represents and creates
opportunity. Economies have to find innovate ways to Africa is in a position to build new and meaningful
deliver better products and services to markets and to global partnerships based on mutual respect rather
tackle issues from water management, energy security than aid and charity. Only Africans will develop Africa
and health to climate change. and determine the continent’s future.

• To boost water efficiency, new models of usage, • Africa needs a consensus on how it wants to deal
management and pricing are needed, as well as with both traditional powers and emerging partners.
stronger linkages across sectors. • African countries should focus on how to deepen
• The adoption of technology will be a major boost to partnerships among themselves.
productivity, allowing economies to unlock value in • Partnerships should not be used to shift blame.
poorer communities and rural areas. African nations should take responsibility for their
• Political will is necessary to boost public investment actions.
in agriculture.
• Innovative solutions such as public-private
partnerships and the better leveraging of existing
distribution and treatment networks could result in
the improved delivery of healthcare.
• Companies stand ready to work with governments
but the latter need to create aligned policy
frameworks to make ventures viable.

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From left to right at the Opening Plenary Session: Pierre Nkurunziza, President of Burundi; Bingu Wa Mutharika, President of Malawi;
Thabo Mbeki, President of South Africa; Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum; John Agyekum Kufuor,
President of Ghana; and Raila Amolo Odinga, Prime Minister of Kenya

Licence to Lead Democracy Around the World

Leadership is the ultimate force capable of bridging
the gap between daunting challenges and
unprecedented opportunities. This sub-theme
explored how leadership can turn adversity into

• Mediocre leadership and poor governance have
Note: Democracy index scores
been major impediments to prosperity. range from 0 to 10 (highest)
indicating conditions in five
areas: electoral process
• The continent has all too often experienced two of and pluralism; civil liberties; Full democracy (score of 8-10)
Flawed democracy (score of 6-7.9)
the functioning of government;
political participation; and Hybrid regime (score of 4-5.9)
the most extreme forms of the lack of accountability political culture. Labels indicate range of Authoritarian regime (score <4)
scores and are not intended to be descriptive. No Data

– corruption and the unwillingness of leaders to step
Source: EIU
down following electoral defeat.
• Public institutions including political parties need to
be strengthened and made accountable.
• The quality of leadership in the middle levels of the
public service should be improved.
• In general, there are signs that African leadership is
improving and accountability and transparency
standards are rising.

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Achievements, Commitments and Aspirations

Advancing Global Health – The Global Health
In a world where power is shared and decision- Initiative unveiled a host of practical tools for
making is dispersed across time zones, people companies to use to help tackle tuberculosis.
cannot be coerced, they must be convinced. The
World Economic Forum is proud to play a role in a Promoting Social Entrepreneurship – Finalists for
multistakeholder world and a multistakeholder the 2008 Social Entrepreneur Award in South Africa
future. were recognized. The Schwab Foundation’s Africa
Social Entrepreneurs Meeting marked the first
We have selected a few achievements, gathering of more than 120 social entrepreneurs and
commitments and aspirations to share with the resource providers in Africa focusing on innovative and
community. Some are supported by an individual, entrepreneurial solutions to social and environmental
others by a coalition of members from our challenges. The Schwab Foundation for Social
community, including the Forum itself. And in yet Entrepreneurship’s current network covers more than
others, the Forum has simply played a facilitating 40 countries and includes 144 outstanding social
role to ensure progress. In all these cases, we are entrepreneurs reaching out to a total of 600 million
gratified to be associated with leaders in business, beneficiaries.
government, civil society and academia who are
committed, through their actions, to improving the Business Taking Action against HIV/AIDS – To
state of the world. establish HIV/AIDS workplace programmes:
• Eskom has supported 42 suppliers in South Africa,
It is our hope that the aspirations inspire reaching 20,000 people.
commitments in the coming period and that the • Unilever has supported 70 small tea farms in Kenya,
commitments this year translate into action and reaching 12,000 people.
achievement. • SAB Miller has supported 400 owner drivers and
160 bars.

Among the Achievements Incorporating African insights in global
deliberations – Mining industry feedback was
Boosting African Agriculture – At our 2007 incorporated into the global response to resource
gathering, the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa endowment challenges and opportunities.
(AGRA) announced the appointment of former UN
Secretary-General Kofi Annan as its first Chairman. To Launching Africa@Risk – The Forum’s Global Risk
date AGRA has invested US$ 330 million in African Network published its first risk report focusing on the
agricultural development. global risks that impact the region.

Developing the Business Alliance Against Among the Commitments
Chronic Hunger – Our initiative tackled the issue of
increasing food production in Africa by sharing insights Kenyan and international business leaders
from its existing projects. New strategies being committed to engaging with the new government
developed include innovative financing mechanisms to of Kenya to support government efforts to restore
drive agriculture-sector growth, sourcing from small Kenya’s economic activity.
scale farmers and expanding the retail distribution
networks of goods including seeds, fertilizer, food and An energy financing mechanism that draws on a
fuel. combination of funds from an array of sources
(multilaterals, charitable organizations, other donors)
Managing Energy Poverty Action – In 2007, the and seeks to minimize the transaction costs
group unveiled its bricks-and-mortar office housed by associated with the financing of rural electrification
the Development Bank of South Africa. The Energy projects was developed.
Poverty Alliance Management Unit (EPAMU) will further
promote the EPA’s objectives. EPAMU’s midterm goal Our Water initiative committed to developing water
is to build its institutional capacity to act as a forecasts which will raise awareness while
matchmaker between leading companies, simultaneously developing a Sub-Saharan water
governments, local entrepreneurs and communities, workstream that will spread best practices.
as well as national and international finance institutions
and donors, to enable project financing and execution The Africa Gender Parity Group was launched this
to address the challenges of energy poverty. year, committing to disseminating best practices for
narrowing the gender gap across the continent.

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To support Zimbabwe, a member of the Young Among the Aspirations
Global Leader (YGL) community has committed to The Africa community shared the aspiration that
hosting an international delegation of YGLs in Zimbabwe would return to economic prosperity and
Zimbabwe to witness what is happening on the that the opportunity would arise for Zimbabwe’s many
ground. The objective is to focus on investment international friends to partake in its reconstruction.
opportunities that can help support Zimbabwe’s
economy. The community called for leadership to boost faith in
the policing of African societies and for an “all hands
Members of the YGL community have committed their on deck” fight against crime.
time and expertise to teaching and mentoring
young leaders at the African Leadership Academy. In an effort to increase access to HIV treatment,
Unilever, Eskom, Volkswagen, Standard Chartered
The Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund, a US$ 50 Bank, SAB Miller and Heineken aspire to support all
million call for proposals to catalyse business the small and medium-sized enterprises in their supply
innovation across several areas, was launched. chains to establish HIV/AIDS workplace programmes.
Together, they could reach over one million people,
The African Development Bank has committed to but will need to partner with government to make this
developing a facility called the African Financing happen.
Partnership (AFP) with other partners by 2008-09. The
AFP will harmonize procedures and enable the Deeper partnerships among universities,
member institutions to increase their operations businesses and governments in Africa are needed
without increasing processing costs. to ensure that universities are contributing to the
continent’s growth.

The removal of constraints to intra-African trade
to allow capacity, efficiencies and scale to be
improved regionally must be sought even as
negotiations continue in the global arena.

The increased input and engagement of African
businesses in global trade negotiations is desired as
they can bring knowledge and expertise to strengthen
the case presented by African governments.

There should be a continued dialogue with Africa’s
diaspora, possibly led by the African Union or the
“Africa has contributed perhaps least New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).
to climate change but will suffer
disproportionately in coming decades.”

Sadako Ogata, President, Japan International Cooperation
Agency, Japan; Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum on
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Re-engineering Growth

“We all believe that agriculture is the “The issue of rising food prices is a
battlefield for economic growth in time bomb.”
Jacob G. Zuma, President, African National Congress (ANC),
Monty Jones, Executive Director, Forum for Agricultural South Africa
Research in Africa, Ghana

Since 2004, Africa has experienced economic growth But with the global economy slowing due to the
of about 6%. The main factors behind this strong downturn in the US and high energy and food prices
performance are evident: the rise in global demand for hurting both developed and developing countries, the
commodities, especially from fast-charging economies continent is likely to find it increasingly difficult to soar
such as China and India, the establishment of peace (see Figure 1). Africa is entering a period when the
and stability in areas once plagued by persistent strength and resilience of its economies will be put to
conflict, better governance in the public and private test. The question is whether the region can turn
sectors, increased budgets, and rising interest among adversity to opportunity and find new drivers of
investors attracted by improved conditions and growth.
expanding opportunities. The good news is spreading
– this year, 31 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, six At the World Economic Forum on Africa, participants
more than in 2007, are expected to report growth identified five key priorities for the continent to sustain
above 5%. economic growth:

Figure 1: Africa's Economic Prospects • address deficiencies in agriculture to increase the
Growth in Africa is expected to remain robust despite a global slowdown
productivity of this critical sector
• diversify economies into higher value-added
Sub-Saharan Africa
products and services
• invest in infrastructure to develop supply chains and
improve efficiency
GDP growth

• focus on education and skills development to
increase capacity
• deepen regional integration to pool resources and
create market power
2004 2005 2006 2007 2008F 2009F

Source: IMF World Economic Outlook, April 2008

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Africa@Risk 2008
Report Highlights Four Key Risks Facing the Region

Food security, geopolitical instability, economic shocks and In preparing this Africa@Risk

climate change all threaten Africa’s development, according report, more than 20
to the Africa@Risk report. Released on the occasion of the experts from
World Economic Forum on Africa, the report features the business, academia,
latest insights into trends, potential consequences and non-governmental
mitigation relevant to these four key risks facing Africa: organizations and
A Global Risk
civil society were Network Briefing

1. Food and Freshwater Security – How best can Africa cope asked to consider the
with increasing food and freshwater insecurity? What are drivers of the recent
the risks and opportunities for the region? period of
2. Geopolitical Instability – Can Africa sustain and consolidate growth in Africa and
progress on transparent and democratically accountable the opportunities that
governance? Can it increase its institutional capacity to exist, as well as the threats to Africa’s continuing progress.
prevent, manage and resolve both intrastate and interstate The report concludes that for Africa – a continent
conflict? characterized by huge opportunities and ever-increasing
regional and global interdependence – the imperative is for
3. Economic Shocks – Can African resource rich countries collective action to mitigate these shared risks.
reduce their commodity dependency by diversifying their
economies? How can wealth be better distributed? How
can African countries increase their trade benefits?

4. Climate Change, the Environment and Challenges to
Africa’s Development – How will global warming affect
Africa? How best can the region, countries, businesses
and communities adapt to mitigate its effects?

into an opportunity?” asked Obiageli Katryn
Figure 2: Agricultural Prices Ezekwesili, the World Bank’s Vice-President, Africa
Major cereals have doubled in price in little more than two years
Region. “Currently, yields in Africa are the lowest in the
world. We need a long-term approach.” Added Monty
Jones, Executive Director of the Forum for Agricultural
Index of real prices* (100=January 2006)

Rice Research in Africa: “We all believe that agriculture is
250 the battlefield for economic growth in Africa.”

Maize (corn)
There is certainly reason to believe that if African
countries make the investments needed, agricultural
100 yields can increase. With food prices rising (see Figure

2), there may now be enormous incentive for finally
Jan-06 Jan-07 Jan-08
addressing deficiencies in the continent’s farming
* Priced in US$; US-inflation adjusted prices with April 2008 as base month
systems. “While between 70-80% of the population of
Source: IMF; US Bureau of Labor Statistics; PwC analysis
Africa is engaged in agriculture, an average of only 3-
4% of the continent’s national budgets is allocated to
Overall, Africa needs to assess where its global the sector,” said Namanga Ngongi, President of the
competitive edge lies. “There is a great potential of Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) in
growth in areas where we have unbeatable Kenya. “Some countries have committed up to 10%
comparative advantage,” said Salim Ismail, Group of their budgets but they are few in number.”
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Groupe
Socota, Madagascar, in a session on trade. With a Steps have to be taken to help small farmers increase
global food crisis emerging, agriculture could be one output and subsistence farmers access markets. New
such sector. “How does Africa convert the food crisis financing models including subsidies and microfinance

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Trevor Manuel, Minister of Finance of South Africa, and Obiageli Katryn Ezekwesili, Vice-President, Africa
Region, World Bank, Washington DC

schemes for small farmers are also needed, as well as “How does Africa convert the food
ways to bring them together to boost productivity
through collaboration. Rural development is critical.
crisis into an opportunity? Currently,
“What these people need is a way to make money,” yields in Africa are the lowest in the
said social entrepreneur Nick Moon, Co-Founder and world. We need a long-term approach.”
Managing Director of KickStart International in Kenya.

Obiageli Katryn Ezekwesili, Vice-President, Africa Region,
World Bank, Washington DC

The plight of Africa’s farmers is inextricably linked to
the continent’s infrastructure challenges. Better water
distribution and management, for example, will
increase irrigation. Only 4% of African farming is
irrigated. The construction of roads and transport links
will improve producers’ access to markets. “Farmers
get just 12% of the proceeds from agricultural
produce, with 88% lost to transportation, middlemen
and other links in the supply chain,” explained Joseph
Daniel Taets, Managing Director and President,
“Intellectual property and innovation Europe, at Archer Daniels Midland International. “This
inequity requires remedy to encourage greater
allow Africa to compete internationally.
productivity and diversification in the sector.”
We don’t necessarily need abundant
energy but rather need to figure out our Africa’s growth, argued Austine O. Ometoruwa,
competitive advantage on the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Africa
Finance Corporation in Nigeria, is constrained by poor
international market.”
infrastructure, particularly electricity and transport.
Freight from Africa typically costs twice as much as it
Millard W. Arnold Jr, Executive Director, Murray & Roberts, does for competitors in Asia and Latin America, while
South Africa

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Kenya’s Call: “Yes, we can.”

Kenya’s new leadership hailed their country’s revival following A commitment was made to create a “cobweb” of
last year’s violent general elections. Participants at a dinner telecommunications connectivity while another undertaking,
session, including the new Prime Minister, Raila Amolo to provide free secondary education, has been advanced by
Odinga, echoed the campaign slogan of US presidential the new unity government as part of “Vision 2030”, a wide-
candidate, Barack Obama, who is of Kenyan extraction, ranging development plan.
“Yes, we can.”
A roadmap to a new constitution in Kenya has been
Following the historic agreement between the two rival established, which Kenyan ministers said is likely to be in
political parties, the Party of National Unity and the Orange place by the end of the year. Electoral reform is also being
Democratic Movement, the panellists affirmed that “a new tackled.
Kenya has been born” and “Kenya is now moving forward.”
The issue of income disparity is being addressed partly
The establishment of a new ministry for the metropolitan area through the devolution of power. An Ethnic and Race
of Nairobi was discussed, aimed at the development of the Relations law has been passed to establish a permanent
city. A new ministry has also been established for the commission to address ethnic disputes, while a Truth and
northern province of Kenya, an area that has been neglected Reconciliation Commission had also been set up to address
historically but that the panellists affirmed has great potential, post-independence disputes.
particularly in mining and agriculture.

product delivery times are as much as three times Such challenges make it imperative that African
longer. Only 5% of Sub-Saharan Africans – and just countries focus on making the right decisions to
3% of South Africans – have access to broadband enhance competitiveness. Investing in skills
Internet; an African typically has to sacrifice up to 64% development and education is critical. “We must
of his average monthly salary to afford it. While harness the resources and skilled manpower and
tourism could be a valuable new driver of growth for involve our people more in development,” argued Raila
the region, limited transport links across the continent Amolo Odinga, the Prime Minister of Kenya. “That way
are a major impediment. we will be able to catch up with other parts of the
world.” Said Millard W. Arnold Jr, Executive Director of
The lack of infrastructure also hinders the continent’s South African construction group Murray & Roberts:
ability to diversify its economies. New growth will “Intellectual property and innovation allow Africa to
certainly be driven by higher value-added businesses compete internationally. We don’t necessarily need
and enterprises. There is no reason why Africa should abundant energy but rather need to figure out our
simply export cashews overseas and not handle the competitive advantage on the international market.”
processing of the nuts to gain more value. The
development of organic prawn farming in Madagascar, Finally, for Africa to develop new drivers of growth, the
coffee packaging in Ethiopia and diamond cutting and continent must deepen integration. As many
polishing in Botswana illustrate what can be done if participants pointed out, the small size of several of
the skills are available and the right investments are the continent’s economies makes them unattractive to
made. In one session, Baledzi Gaolathe, Botswana’s investors. Regional integration and the creation of an
Minister of Finance and Development Planning, authentic continental single market would be a major
proposed that Africa’s cattle industry could diversify boost to Africa’s competitiveness. Concluded
into by-products such as hides and leather goods. President Kufuor of Ghana: “Africa needs more
But, he warned, even if Africa develops new value- cooperation through the African Union to organize and
added products, they might not be competitive in the coordinate how Africa relates with the rest of the
global market, given tariffs and other trade barriers in world.”
the developed markets, as well as logistics and
supply-chain costs.

15 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Unfinished Business

“We need to approach people as “I think the biggest obstacle in Africa is
untapped investors, not just as infrastructure. The most important are
untapped consumers.” roads as well as power. It's very
important for business.”
Nick Moon, Co-Founder and Managing Director, KickStart
International, Kenya
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman, Dubai World, United
Arab Emirates; Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum on Africa

As African companies rise to the challenge of finding
creative ways to exploit the multiplier effect of their private institutions increasingly offering better
economic activities, business as usual will not be alternatives to state facilities that suffer from poor
enough. What will it take to bring the business quality due to lack of funding, mismanagement and
environment up to global standards? Africa requires skills shortages. Given the slow pace at which African
fast-track solutions to reduce poverty and make the countries have moved to address poverty, the concept
continent more competitive. Governments alone do of public-private partnerships to find solutions to
not have the capacity to devise or deliver these. enduring problems is becoming more popular.

Since 1980, economic growth has accounted for 80%
of global poverty alleviation. This suggests that Figure 1: Private Sector Health Services

investment and entrepreneurship, typically driven by Nigeria and Malawi have high rates of private-sector health services provision

the private sector, are the most effective ways to Nigeria

reduce the number of poor people. The business Malawi

sector, in creating wealth for itself, has a major role to Uganda

play in generating wealth downstream in the Ethiopia
communities in which it operates. “Business is good Angola

at making things work,” said Pat Davies, Chief Rwanda

Executive of one of Africa’s most successful
companies, Sasol. Zambia


Already half of healthcare in subSub-Saharan Africa is 0 10 20 30 40 50 60%
Percentage of total health services provided by private sector
being delivered directly by the private sector (see
Source: National Health Accounts, WHO; McKinsey analysis.
Figure 1). Education is going the same way, with

16 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Strengthening the Alliance Against Chronic Hunger

At the 2008 World Economic Forum on Africa, leaders of sector partnerships to increase food security. BAACH
global and regional business, government, civil society and partners also took part in plenary and panel discussions to
international organizations met to define concrete business highlight priorities for action to improve African food security.
strategies to help address Africa’s growing food crisis.
BAACH was founded in 2006 by the Forum’s Consumer
Convened by the Industries community with the support of Kofi Annan to
World Economic develop business-led solutions to hunger. The Alliance is now
Forum’s Business a vibrant cross-industry network of globally-leading
Alliance Against companies and partner institutions which is breaking new
Chronic Hunger ground in defining and catalysing action on business
(BAACH), strategies to increase sustainable food production,
corporate leaders particularly in Africa.
from multiple
industries defined At the global level, the Alliance engages a wide scope of
strategies for leaders to build partnership and collaboration for improved
scaling up food security. At the local level, BAACH established a Kenya
business-led Alliance led by 20 companies and organizations that are
solutions for food working in a pilot district to develop and test business-led
production and approaches to improving food production and incomes. This
entrepreneurship year, Kenya Alliance partners are undertaking 14 pilot
in hungry regions. projects in the district.
William V. Hickey, President and Chief Executive They presented
Officer, Sealed Air, USA, and David Mureithi,
Managing Director, Unilever East and Southern
these strategies to In 2008, the Alliance has partnered with the Bill and Melinda
Africa, Kenya heads of state Gates Foundation to conduct a global assessment of
and government scalable business models that contribute to sustainable food
as well as to other high-level public leaders, and discussed production, engaging a wide range of industries and
priorities for public-private collaboration to maximize private- stakeholders.

More and more governments are setting up the A growing area of attention for the private sector in
frameworks for such partnerships, while the private Africa is finding innovative ways to tap the spending
sector is proving a ready partner if the benefits are and investing power at the bottom of the economic
well defined. Such partnerships provide a vehicle for pyramid. This requires a new way of looking at
business and governments to address the consumers. Said Nick Moon of KickStart International:
impediments to growth and investment resulting from “We need to approach people as untapped investors,
unsupportive policies that constrain growth and not just as untapped consumers.”
reduce the ability of the private sector to unlock it.
Closer attention, for example, needs to be paid to
consumer spending habits. The assumption that low-
income consumers make purchases based solely on
price is overstated and other issues such as relevance
to people’s lives, long-term investment and prestige
value are also driving factors. Large companies can
spur growth by creating linkages with and investment
in small and medium-sized enterprises, thereby
developing the capacity of businesses to participate
more profitably in the supply chain.

Retailers and manufacturers are also unlocking value
at the bottom of the pyramid through their multiplicity
of suppliers and inputs in addition to direct and
“Business is good at making things indirect employment. Mobile phone companies have
work.” indirectly generated thousands of jobs simply through
the introduction of prepaid cards for users.
Pat Davies, Chief Executive, Sasol, South Africa

17 | World EconomicForum on Africa
“The environment has totally changed “Water is the new oil.”
because we have better political
stability.” E. Neville Isdell, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The
Coca-Cola Company, USA; Co-Chair of the World Economic
Aliko Dangote, President and Chief Executive Officer, Dangote Forum on Africa
Group, Nigeria; Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum on Africa

The agriculture sector could also turn out to be a Banks generally consider small farmers to be high risk.
timely opportunity with enormous potential. The This is exacerbated by the fact that most land in Africa
private sector has the ability, with the right incentives, is owned by the state and thus does not qualify as
to enable Africa to make a quantum leap in food collateral for bank loans. Given African governments’
production. Such a leap would both eradicate hunger resistance to private land ownership, banks need to
locally and capitalize on opportunities presented by consider innovative ways to unlock private funding for
the current world food crisis. Public-sector funding of agriculture based on unconventional collateral options
agriculture, however, remains low and despite pockets such as warehouse receipts for stored food and a
of commercial agriculture, African farmers have not track record of output. More creative use needs to be
moved much beyond subsistence farming. made of land leases and property titles to realize
value. Babatunde Raji Fashola, Governor of Nigeria’s
Still, there has been progress in private-sector populous Lagos State, said his government
initiatives such as the use of small-scale farmers understands that there is wealth to be unleashed at
contracted by large commercial enterprises in cotton the bottom of the economic pyramid by making use of
and tobacco and in the production of fresh produce idle land. It was looking at ways to unlock this
for large supermarket chains. The development of potential by formalizing home ownership and property
agriculture needs to be supported by two areas that title regulations.
are still problematic in African countries – finance for
small farmers and land tenure.

18 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Nik Gowing, Main Presenter, BBC World News, United Kingdom, leading the discussion on food insecurity

Climate change is another possible business Technology is a key area of private-sector intervention
opportunity. The continent faces losses estimated at in development, given its potential to drive education
between 1.9% and 2.7% of GDP unless new and growth. But for it to spur growth, African
strategies are found not only to mitigate the effects of governments have to look at how they can help to
it but also to adapt to it in the long term. Companies bring down the cost of providing it. If the costs of
stand ready to work with governments but the latter access are lowered, there will be significant spin-off
need to create aligned policy frameworks to make effects in key areas such as education, healthcare and
ventures viable. small business.

Water management is yet another area where Another challenge for business and government is to
business is becoming involved. As increasing scarcity harness the massive inward investment from the
pushes the price of water up, there is a good African diaspora, which in 2007 significantly
business case to be made for the better use of water. surpassed development assistance inflows. A great
Meeting Co-Chair E. Neville Isdell, Chairman and Chief deal of the money goes into consumer spending. The
Executive Officer of The Coca Cola Company, said his main hope is that the development of strong, private
company has pushed for the introduction of water sector-driven economies will draw back not just
efficiencies through the supply chain. For example money from the diaspora into productive investment
sugar producers have been asked to find way to but also badly needed skills.
reduce water in the growing process. “Water is the
new oil,” he said.

African Multinationals South Africa's Business Sentiment

Number of African multinationals on the Forbes Global 2000 list has grown,
Business confidence has fallen to its lowest level since 2001
but not as quickly as companies from India and China
75 100
Number of companies in the Forbes Global 2000*

South Africa Business Confidence Index




Morocco 30
South South
Africa Africa 10
2004 2007
0 0
Africa India China Dec-98 Dec-99 Dec-00 Dec-01 Dec-02 Dec-03 Dec-04 Dec-05 Dec-06 Dec-07

* based on an index of sales, profits, assets and market values

Source: Forbes magazine Source: Rand National Bank/Bureau for Economic Research

19 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Innovate or Perish

“You can have many mineral resources, “In many countries you can track
but if you have no peace, there is no growth directly to broadband.”
way to develop your country.”
Ajai Chowdhry, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, HCL
Pierre Nkurunziza, President of Burundi Infosystems, India

African countries have made progress towards issue, rather than a sector-specific problem. This
tackling the significant problems that continue to simple mindset change has allowed the problem to
impede the continent’s development but the scale of move out of the ambit of health officials and into a
the challenges requires innovative solutions to really much wider engagement across many disciplines.
move the continent forward. Such solutions require
breaking the mould of traditional applications and
models and finding new ways of doing things to fast- Figure 1: Water Consumption, by Use

track development in ways that are also sustainable Sub-Saharan Africa's agricultural sector uses a lower proportion
of water than other regions, because of less irrigation
over the long term. 100%
Percentage of water consumed, by use

Areas that are key to the development agenda, such 80

as water, energy, health and education, have suffered 60

some degree of neglect over several decades. This
has affected the quality and quantity of delivery. But 40

the pressures of globalization, climate change and 20

competition for scarce resources are now pushing
these to the forefront of thinking about sustainable 0
World Europe & East Asia South Latin Middle East Sub-
Central & Pacific Asia America & North Saharan
solutions. Asia & Caribbean Africa Africa

Note: Estimates exclude use of rainfed water for agriculture.

Source: World Bank, 2002
Broader participation by multiple stakeholders, rather
than just governments and donors, is key to tackling
development issues effectively. The capacity to tackle The same change in thinking is now required for other
problems of healthcare, for example, has been areas, including water, which is quickly becoming the
increased by redefining health as an economic-growth new oil as climate change heightens concerns about

20 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Learning journey to the Green Point Stadium under construction, one of the venues of the 2010 Football
World Cup

sustainable supply across the continent. It is intervention in the economy are a constraint to
estimated that nearly one in two people in Africa will innovation in food production as is the lack of official
live in water stressed areas within 25 years, a region spending in agriculture required to attract investment
that already uses a lower proportion of water for and move production beyond subsistence levels. An
agriculture than the rest of the world (see Figure 1). average of only 3-4% of most countries’ national
Thus water insecurity risks need to be mitigated now budgets is allocated to the sector.
in a manner that is beneficial to all stakeholders.
Technology is an important component of the
New models of usage, management and pricing are innovation that is required to push development. The
required as well as stronger linkages across sectors. very lack of development in most of Africa has allowed
Regional cooperation must play a greater role in future new technologies to be applied rapidly and effectively.
planning. About 60% of water sources in Africa are Mobile telephony is a case in point. Yet over-regulation
shared, making the continental dimension critical. But in many countries is constraining the use of
is there sufficient political will to move forward? “While technology, making it expensive for the private sector
politically the continent talks about the need for – and governments – to deliver. The high cost of
regional solutions, the important steps that need to broadband access in African countries as a result of
make it happen are not happening,” the World Bank’s unsupportive policies has resulted in very low
Obiageli Katryn Ezekwesili, warned. “Governments talk penetration rates, severely limiting the development
regional when they act national.” benefits to be gained from building a critical mass of
IT use.
Innovative thinking is required to ensure the
sustainability of water and other resources, particularly The actions of governments in this regard flies in the
among poor communities that must be given face of success stories in other parts of the world
responsibility for the management and sustainability of where technology has been key to economic growth.
supply. In agriculture, for example, crops need to be Apart from more obvious applications such as health
adapted to make them more resistant to threats and education, cheap Internet access is a tool for the
posed by climate and disease. More sophisticated growth of micro and small enterprises, which unlock
farming methods are required to increase food supply. value in poorer communities and in rural areas.
Governments need to release more spectrum and
But political will to exploit the situation is also needed make it available in big enough chunks to make it cost
here. High costs of doing business due to government effective. Ajai Chowdhry, Chairman and Chief

21 | World EconomicForum on Africa
During "The Rising Billions" session on the new consumers across Africa

Executive Officer of HCL Infosystems in India, said the creative financing schemes for more traditional energy
supply of broadband should be a national priority, provision, have to be developed to address the
given its importance as a driver of growth in countries problem at the scale that is required.
such as Brazil and South Korea. “In many countries
you can track growth directly to broadband,” he said. Crucially, energy savings will also need to come from
modifications to individuals’ behaviour in energy use
and in preventive methods such as improved energy
Figure 2: Carbon Markets Take Off efficiency standards in new buildings and appliances,
European Emissions Trading Scheme went into effect in 2005
backed by legislation. Ideas from the youth, who will
700 be the main entrepreneurs and energy users in the
Annual volume of project-based transactions* (MtCo2e)

600 years ahead, can also be adopted.
Health, and particularly the enduring problems of HIV
Joint Implementation and Voluntary
other compliance schemes
and malaria that are robbing Africa of skills and
Clean Development Mechanism productive labour, is another development challenge
requiring innovative solutions. These can be
100 developed through the more effective use of public-
0 private partnerships in terms of drugs, insecticides,
1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
interventions and investment. Better leveraging
* vintages up to 2012
existing medicine distribution and treatment networks,
Source: World Bank, State and Trends in the Carbon Markets 2008
rather than focusing on narrowly defined interventions,
would be a creative innovation. Existing schemes to
Allied to the widespread provision of technology is the treat river blindness, for example, could be extended
need for innovative energy solutions, for example, to rolling out bed nets and treating other diseases
carbon trading (see Figure 2). A coalescence of such as bilharzia.
developments in African countries, including economic
growth, poor governance, inadequate long-term
planning and climate change, has led to power
shortages in every region, which has serious
implications for development. Innovative off-grid
energy solutions, particularly in rural areas, as well as

22 | World EconomicForum on Africa
A Watertight Future in the Balance

Significant disruptions to business due to water insecurity – Leveraging Business Competencies:
across all sectors, and with all the associated technical, • Encourage water intensive companies operating in the
economic, political, environmental and social implications – region to sign the CEO Water Mandate.
are a reality today and are projected only to worsen in the
future. Forty percent of Fortune 1,000 companies agree that • Create a resource tool listing the various water
the impact of a water shortage would be severe, but only management initiatives and innovations that companies are
17% are prepared for such a crisis. undertaking and the impact they are having; a platform will
enable stakeholders to access this information and to
Corporate leaders, government officials and experts came suggest other activities to undertake to improve water
together in a workshop to examine the political and resource management.
economic implications of water insecurity for the region. They
also developed ideas for a regional Sub-Saharan Africa Multistakeholder Dialogue:
workstream to contribute to the three overall objectives of • Support existing innovative public-private initiatives that
the World Economic Forum’s water project: facilitate the development of win-win water projects – for
example, the NEPAD Business Foundation Water Initiative
Raising Awareness: – by using the Forum’s regional platform to help bolster
• Facilitate a platform for business to respond to emerging and scale up these efforts to stimulate the implementation
water resource management plans in the SADC region and of a greater volume of bankable, public-private partnership
key river basins in particular, and discuss the implications water projects.
of these plans with governments and other stakeholders.

23 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Partnerships without Borders

In the session “Taking Control of Global Partnerships,” “Africa needs a consensus on how it
moderator Siki Mgabadeli, Senior Business News
Anchor at CNBC Africa, asked whether the title
wants to deal with emerging partners
reflects reality. Is Africa really in control of its and traditional powers.”
partnerships? The immediate answer from Al Sayed
Mohd Sharaf, Chief Executive Officer of DP World in He Wenping, Research Fellow and Director, African Studies,
the United Arab Emirates, was a simple “not yet.” Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), People's Republic
of China

Figure 1: Africa's Trading Partners

Trade is shifting away from Europe
in-hand is better than one who has to be carried.
Africa is not willing to be carried anymore.”
Percentage of Africa's external trade

The private sector seems poised to play a growing
Middle East**
China (incl. HK)
role to help Africa become more competitive and forge

international alliances that extend beyond the
40 customary handouts that have long characterized the
region’s relationship with rich countries. “We have a
unique combination of developed world business skills
0 and having learned how to do business in emerging
1990 2005

* EU12 consists of Benelux countries, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain and UK
markets,” said Sasol’s Pat Davies. “This needs to be
** Middle East includes Libya and Egypt
emphasized more, and we can lead the way.” Tony
Source: IMF Direction of Trade Statistics
Elumelu, Chief Executive Officer of United Bank for
Africa in Nigeria, added: “We need to realize that
While it might have seemed glib, Sharaf’s response nobody is going to develop Africa except us. To fix
echoed the consensus in the meeting that Africa is Africa we need partnerships. I would like to call on
ready for a more prominent part on the world stage. African businesses to build the readiness needed to
“Africa must be stronger to be a better trading partner compete in the world. Externally people will realize
for the North,” said Bingu Wa Mutharika, President of that Africa is a good destination for investment and we
Malawi (its trade with partners beyond Europe is need to be prepared.”
growing - see Figure 1). “A partner who walks hand-

24 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Figure 2: Africa's Trade with China
“To fix Africa we need partnerships. I
A few countries hold large trade surpluses
would like to call on African businesses
$7.5 to build the readiness needed to
compete in the world.”
Trade balance with China/Hong Kong,

2007* (US$, billions)


Tony Elumelu, Chief Executive Officer, United Bank for Africa,

Africa overall

through customs at his country’s border with




South Africa


neighbouring Togo despite the fact that a single tribe
* through 3Q
straddles both sides of the boundary. “Africa needs
Source: IMF Direction of Trade Statistics
more cooperation through the African Union to
organize and coordinate how Africa relates with the
Participants from outside the region agreed that Africa rest of the world,” said the president. Added Obiageli
should solidify its base to take advantage of Katryn Ezekwesili of the World Bank: “Regional
international opportunities. Instead of worrying about solutions are very important for Africa, especially when
the existence or not of a Beijing Consensus on Africa you look at the large number of landlocked
as trade and investment with China blossoms (see economies.” Priorities should include regional
Figure 2), “Africa needs a consensus on how it wants infrastructure, notably cross-border railways, she said.
to deal with emerging partners and traditional
powers,” said He Wenping, Research Fellow and Of course not all cooperation need focus on joining
Director of African Studies at the Chinese Academy of together to meet foreigners. For instance, partnerships
Social Sciences (CASS) in the People's Republic of will be key to any solution to the continent’s food
China. crisis, panellists in the session on food security
agreed. Monty Jones of the Forum for Agricultural
For starters African countries might want to focus on Research in Africa called for “empowering
breaking down barriers among themselves. President smallholders to make sure they can access
Kufuor of Ghana described the difficulties of getting information and outside inputs and have their voices

25 | World EconomicForum on Africa
From Left to right: Jendayi E. Frazer, US Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of African Affairs; Sadako
Ogata, President, Japan International Cooperation Agency, Japan; Pat Davies, Chief Executive, Sasol,
South Africa; Douglas Alexander, Secretary of State for International Development of the United Kingdom

heard. If that happens, I foresee a considerable Finally, the meeting included a healthy warning about
increase in production.” not reducing the term “partnership” into a buzzword
designed to avoid responsibility and divert blame. “A
The private sector is already working with small lot of people talk about partnerships because they
farmers to move in this direction and can do more in want to duck tough decisions,” cautioned a panellist
partnership with governments, multilateral agencies in one session. “All too often it means ‘We’ll make the
and civil society organizations, said Gareth M. decisions and you come and pay the bill’.”
Ackerman, Chairman of Pick ‘n Pay Holdings, South
Africa, and Aliko Dangote, President and Chief
Executive Officer of Dangote Group, Nigeria, a Co-
Chair of this year’s World Economic Forum on Africa.
Ackerman recommended more partnerships between
large and small retailers to help “shorten supply lines”.
Dangote described efforts by his company to provide
loans, supply fertilizer and build silos for small farmers.
“I suggest that we give them loans,” he said. “If not,
they will not survive.”

One of the most promising cooperative initiatives
outlined at the meeting addressed a pressing health
problem that respects no border – malaria. With the
backing of regional health ministers through the
Southern African Development Coordination
“A partner who walks hand-in-hand is
Conference (SADCC), a team of specialists from civil
society organizations, private companies and public better than one who has to be carried.
agencies recently completed an expedition along the Africa is not willing to be carried
Zambezi River by boat to examine medical, anymore.”
organizational and practical issues related to
controlling the disease. The effort was coordinated by
the Geneva-based Roll Back Malaria Partnership Bingu Wa Mutharika, President of Malawi
(RBM) and included hands-on support from the Exxon
Mobil Corporation in addition to sundry private-sector

26 | World EconomicForum on Africa
For Management

For Health Professionals

Protecting Your Workforce from Protecting Your Workforce from
Tuberculosis Tuberculosis

A Toolkit for an Integrated Approach to TB Fact Sheets for Health Professionals
and HIV for Businesses in South Africa

World Economic Forum World Economic Forum
Global Health Initiative Global Health Initiative
In cooperation with In cooperation with

May 2008
May 2008

New Toolkit Boosts South African Companies’ Response to TB Threat

South Africa is facing an emerging threat of TB/HIV co- economic impact of TB, which results today in a decline in
infections and fatal drug-resistant strains of the disease. With worker productivity estimated at US$ 13 billion annually.
a staggering 70% of TB patients in South Africa infected with
HIV, the importance of an integrated approach to care is On a practical level, the toolkit will help companies leverage
clear. opportunities and increase activities in the prevention and
management of TB/HIV in the workplace. These measures
The Global Health Initiative of the World Economic Forum will in turn help alleviate the burden and costs associated
and the Lilly MDR-TB Partnership launched a new toolkit that with absenteeism, disrupted workflow and reduced
aims to boost the involvement of South African companies in productivity. By engaging proactively with the community,
tackling the TB/HIV crisis, providing these companies the which forms a key component of the overall business
opportunity to catalyse effective public-private partnerships environment, businesses can offset the marginal cost of
to facilitate successful patient and programme management. partnering with local stakeholders with the huge benefits they
will reap through greater efficiency in the workplace and the
Combined with the technical expertise and knowledge good will in the community.
available under the Department of Health in South Africa,
companies can provide a critical mass of resources for the
successful integration, management and care of TB and
TB/HIV co-infections. This could eventually lessen the

27 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Licence to Lead

“There is a lot of talk about That assessment set the tone for the meeting. Indeed
no term was repeated more frequently in Cape Town
accountability to the people. And, yes, than “leadership”. Even some of the leaders
there is still a lot to do. But there has themselves got into the act. According to Prime
also been a huge amount of progress.” Minister Odinga of Kenya: “What we see is a
continental problem – the problem of bad governance.
We always blame colonialism. But the mediocrity with
Mike Hart, Chief Executive Officer, Africa Region, Standard which Africa has been ruled has been responsible.”
Chartered Bank, United Arab Emirates He called on leaders to speak plainly and openly
about the continent’s shortcomings: “Let us say what
we mean and mean what we say when we talk about
African development.”
“There clearly is a crisis of leadership not just in Africa
but in the world,” said Wendy Luhabe, Chairperson of Leadership is one of those slippery terms that are
the Industrial Development Corporation of South hard to define but easy to identify. Nelson Mandela
Africa, and a Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum had it; others clearly not. While no one attempted to
on Africa. Luhabe decried what she called “the define the term, a number of key elements in
conspiracy of silence among African leaders” that leadership development emerged from the
hinders efforts to “translate challenges into what we discussions: accountability, public institutions including
would consider to be unprecedented opportunities”. political parties, the civil service and youth.

At the same time, participants in the interactive The region has all-too-often experienced two of the
session “Africa Economic Brainstorming – Drivers of most extreme forms of lack of accountability:
Change” ranked “visionary and selfless leadership” corruption and an unwillingness of leaders to step
second only to “education and skills development” as down following electoral defeat. “Corruption is
key to economic progress in Africa over the next 12 everywhere [around the world],” said Jendayi E.
months (see page 5). Frazer, US Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of

28 | World EconomicForum on Africa
“Corruption is everywhere [around the “What we see is a continental problem –
world]. The issue is to establish the rule the problem of bad governance. We
of law so that those corrupt individuals always blame colonialism. But the
can be held accountable.” mediocrity with which Africa has been
ruled has been responsible.”
Jendayi E. Frazer, US Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of
African Affairs Raila Amolo Odinga, Prime Minister of Kenya

African Affairs. “The issue is to establish the rule of law Institutions, including political parties, can sometimes
so that those corrupt individuals can be held determine the effectiveness of leadership for an entire
accountable.” President Mbeki of South Africa nation. For instance, in democratic countries where a
discussed the succession issue. “Practices include the popular political party holds a de facto stranglehold on
possibility of defeat in elections and that you leave power, a ruling party crisis can evolve into a national
power if you lose,” he said. “I think everyone one. The debate in one session hinged on whether a
understands what needs to happen.” certain African country with a strong ruling party had
two centres of power or none. Either way, participants
Accountability was also discussed in terms of seemed to agree that the effect of the party’s crisis on
personal traits. Leadership depends crucially on public governance has been detrimental.
integrity, said Jonathan B. Majiyagbe, Chair of the
Rotary Foundation Trustees at Rotary International, Leadership is needed not only at the top but also in
USA. He noted that this is of great importance when the middle levels of public administration. In one
people tend to tell their leaders only what they want to session, panellists tried to explain why talented young
hear. people fail to go into public service. One reason is that
they see little link between the efforts civil servants
make and the results of their agency or department,

29 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Wendy Luhabe with Cosmas Okoli, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Mobility Aid Appliances Research
and Development Centre (MAARDEC), Nigeria, and Vincent Maphai, Chairman, BHP Billiton, South Africa

“There clearly is a crisis of leadership
Despite the widespread concern, some participants
not just in Africa but in the world.” made a forceful argument that things are indeed
getting better on the leadership front. “There is much
Wendy Luhabe, Chairperson, Industrial Development better clarity in the political leadership on the continent
Corporation, South Africa; Co-Chair of the World Economic about where we need to go,” Mbeki observed. “There
Forum on Africa is greater clarity on how to respond to economic
challenges. And there is an appreciation of the need
to deal with conflict.” Added Mike Hart, Chief
Executive Officer, Africa Region, at Standard
said Leslie W. Maasdorp, Vice-Chairman at Absa Chartered Bank, United Arab Emirates: “We need to
Capital, South Africa, and a Young Global Leader. He give Africans and African countries more credit. There
added that the public service has not marketed itself is a lot of talk about accountability to the people. And,
well among recent graduates. Daniel Kaufmann, yes, there is still a lot to do. But there has also been a
Director for Global Governance at the World Bank huge amount of progress.”
Institute, cited several other factors:
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem of Dubai World and a Co-
• low salaries compared to the private sector Chair of the meeting said: "Kenya gave a good
• a selection process that does not necessarily favour example of reconciliation – the leaders have decided
the best people that the country and the well-being of the people
• the lack of clean government – no good swimmer come before their political ambitions.” He added, “This
wants to dive into dirty water is positive news for investors because they will see
• the lack of meritocracy that at the end of the day what is better for the
• poor training programmes country and the people will stay."
• the lack of prestige in comparison to private-sector
jobs The openness, frankness and resolve with which
leadership was addressed by all stakeholders were
Even if they have a leg up on the public sector, private widely appreciated. “This is the first Forum,” noted
companies are not satisfied with the volume of young Luhabe, “that is looking at how we can understand
executive prospects entering their ranks. “We see the role, relevance and quality of leadership in Africa
quality but there are just not enough of them,” said E. and use it as a bridge to capitalize on the
Neville Isdell of The Coca-Cola Company, a Co-Chair opportunities the continent offers.”
of the World Economic Forum on Africa.

30 | World EconomicForum on Africa
Africa Gender Parity Group Works to Close the Continent’s Gender Gap
Top female and male leaders from across the continent launched Africa lags behind most parts of the world in closing its gender
an Africa Gender Parity Group at the World Economic Forum on gap on education and health, but is well ahead of many
Africa. The group of business, government, media, academic emerging regions on closing the gap in political empowerment.
and civil society decision-makers are collaborating on ways for In the World Economic
companies and countries to eradicate gender inequality and Forum’s Global Gender Gap “Women account for a
better engage women in the economy. Report, which ranks 128 sizeable portion of
countries according to the Africa’s economies and
Members of the Africa Gender Parity Group include Phumzile size of their gender gaps, could contribute
Mlambo-Ngcuka, Deputy President of South Africa; Linah K. the performance of Sub-
considerably more if
Mohohlo, Governor of the Bank of Botswana; Jay Naidoo, Saharan African countries is
there were greater gender
Chairman of the Board, Development Bank of Southern Africa, greatly varied. South Africa,
South Africa; Elisabeth Tankeu, Commissioner, Trade and ranked 20, is a leader in the equality. The Africa
Industry, African Union, Addis Ababa; Reuel Khoza, Chairman, region, boosted by its Gender Parity Group
Nedbank Group, South Africa; Mandisi Mpahlwa, Minister of scores on the political believes both women and
Trade and Industry of South Africa; William Mzimba, Chief empowerment of women. men need to work
Executive, Accenture, South Africa; Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, However, the region also
together to close the
Director-General and Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Stock contains some of the lowest
gender gap, and thus
Exchange, Nigeria; Gisele Yitamben, Founder and President, ranking countries in the
Association pour le Soutien et l’Appui à la Femme Entrepreneur world, including Zimbabwe better leverage women’s
(ASAFE), Cameroon; Nyasha P. Zhou, Chief Executive, PG (88) and Nigeria (107), talents to increase
Industries (Zimbabwe), Zimbabwe. hampered by particularly productivity and
poor performances in the prosperity in all of
At their first meeting at the World Economic Forum on Africa, the areas of education and
Group called for: health.
• Greater government commitment and funding for primary, Saadia Zahidi, Head of the Gender
secondary and tertiary education, focusing in particular on Parity and Women Leaders Programme,
increasing the retention rates for girls World Economic Forum

• Better legislation to fight discrimination against women,
including in the area of property rights, and effective
implementation of this legislation
• A comprehensive overview of the policies and programmes
that have been effective in narrowing gender gaps in the
region’s best performing countries and a transfer of these best
practices to low performing countries
31 | World EconomicForum on Africa

The World Economic Forum wishes to recognize the support of the following companies as Partners or
Supporters of the World Economic Forum on Africa:

Strategic Partners

Dubai World
Ernst & Young
Goldman Sachs
Intel Corporation
JPMorgan Chase
Merck & Co.
Merrill Lynch
Microsoft Corporation
Standard Chartered

Regional Partners

Absa Capital
Eskom Holdings

Meeting Supporters

African Rainbow Minerals (ARM)
CNBC Africa
First Bank of Nigeria
Magna Carta
Murray Roberts

Service Providers


The World Economic Forum also thanks CNBC Africa as host broadcaster, and City Year for its support.

32 | World EconomicForum on Africa
33 | World EconomicForum on Africa

Børge Brende is Managing Director, Regional Agenda Teams, at the World Economic Forum.
Adeyemi Babington-Ashaye is Associate Director, Acting Head of Africa at the World Economic
Forum. The World Economic Forum on Africa was under his direct responsibility, with Stéphane
Oertel, Community Manager, Africa, responsible for Programme Development; Sophie
Bussmann-Kemdjo, Community Relations Manager, Africa; Alex van Praag, Community
Relations Manager, Africa; and Nadine Bonard, Associate Director, Events, the meeting

Samantha Tonkin, Senior Media Manager at the world Economic Forum, worked with Alejandro
Reyes, Dianna Games and William Hinchberger to produce this report.

The World Economic Forum would like to express its appreciation to the summary writers for
their work at the World Economic Forum on Africa. Session summaries are available on our
website at:

Editing: Fabienne Stassen Fleming, Senior Editor

Design and Layout: Kamal Kimaoui, Associate Principal, Production and Design

Photographs: Eric Miller and Matthew Jordaan

The World Economic Forum would like to recognize the support of PricewaterhouseCoopers in
compiling data and statistics for this report.

34 | World EconomicForum on Africa
This publication is also available in electronic form on the World Economic Forum’s website at the following

World Economic Forum on Africa Web report: (HTML)

The electronic version of this report allows access to a richer level of content from the meeting, including
photographs and session summaries.

The report is also available as a PDF:

Other specific information on the World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town, South Africa, on 4-6 June
2008, can be found at the following links:

35 | World EconomicForum on Africa
The World Economic Forum is an independent
international organization committed to improving
the state of the world by engaging leaders in
partnerships to shape global, regional and
industry agendas.

Incorporated as a foundation in 1971, and based
in Geneva, Switzerland, the World Economic
Forum is impartial and not-for-profit; it is tied to
no political, partisan or national interests.