There is optimism that pulling forces together to deliver is the strategic approach to help Africa achieve its Sustainable Development Goals-SDGs, the United Nations Deputy Secretary General Amina Mohammed has said.
She says that the link between Africa’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and the African Development Bank’s High 5s calls for combined efforts.
Speaking during the meeting that brought together Africa’s heads of State and African Development Bank-AfDB, Mohammed noted that the continent is entering into a decade of action to deliver which requires vast investment requirements.
“The role of the African Development Bank is crucial…to help de-risk investments and attract investment flows……..Africa’s premier institution needs much more support” she added.
The meeting which happened on the sidelines of UN General Assembly on Sunday saw leaders emphasising collective and the need for greater collaboration between the United Nations and the African Development Bank to fast-track Africa’s development.
Africa is grappling with the challenge of 390 million people who living in extreme poverty, hunger and food insecurity which implies that the continent does more time to wait on delivering.
“The clock is ticking, the seconds are passing very fast, yet we still have time left on the clock. We can still close the gap,” said Adesina Akinwumi, President of the African Development Bank.
Adesina says that achieving the Bank’s High 5s will allow Africa to achieve about 90% of the SDGs noting the faster the continent delivers on the Bank’s High 5s, the faster it will reach its goals.
“I am fully convinced that with a change of pace, driven by a greater sense of urgency, and global collective responsibility, Africa can still achieve the SDGs”, he said.
Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa notes that there is need to stem the tide of illicit financial flows, public debt and tax evasion and these, would be a step to keep on track of achieving the SGD’s which are still a challenge for the continent.
Nevertheless, there are ambitious projects taken by the bank with regional collaboration which are already showing success, such as Desert to Power, which aims to provide access to electricity for 250 million people across the 11 countries of the Sahel, 90 million of them through off-grid systems.
Again, the African Continental Free Trade Area, which came into force this year and creates the world’s largest free trade zone, will be another major area for collaboration under the partnership.