Preps for 2017 ECA-AU Conference of Ministers reach advanced stages

Preparations for the joint Annual Ministerial Conference of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the African Union Commission (AUC) have reached advanced stages with the partners dispatching teams to Dakar to put final touches to plans for the forum that provides Africa with a platform to discuss issues pertinent to her development.

The Conference will be held in Dakar, Senegal, from 23-28 March 2017 on the theme, Growth, Inequality and Unemployment.rdquo;

The theme builds on the understanding that the sustained reduction of inequality requires a holistic understanding of the interrelated issues for coherent policymaking.

There is an imperative need for African countries to adopt coherent strategies and national development plans that promote structural transformation and address the challenges of growth, inequality and unemployment and the Conference offers us the opportunity to discuss these issues,rdquo; says Abdalla Hamdok, Acting ECA Executive Secretary.

We will address strategies for enhancing inclusive growth and promoting employment, especially for women and young people,rdquo; he said, adding the Conference provides an ideal platform for high-level policy dialogue to address these challenges.

The Conference will explore measures for reducing inequality and extreme poverty on the continent in order to achieve the targets of the First Ten-Year Implementation Plan (2013-2023) of Agenda 2063 and the goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

It also seeks to find pathways towards inclusive and job-creating growth by engaging with representatives of the private sector, civil society organizations, think tanks, academic and research institutions and other stakeholders.

Preceded by the Committee of Experts, which will meet from Thursday, 23 March to Saturday, 25 March 2017, the Conference of Ministers will take place on Monday 27 and Tuesday 28 March 2017. The plenary sessions of the Conference will commence with a high-level policy dialogue on the 2017 theme, followed by a series of plenary sessions on various sub-themes.

We expect that seasoned and high-level panelists from within and outside Africa will build on the overarching theme towards an outcome that will have important implications for Africa’s future, notes Mr. Hamdok.

The Conference will feature a number of significant high-level side events and other meetings, including the eighteenth session of the Regional Coordination Mechanism for Africa (RCM-Africa). In addition, and following the dynamic 2016 African Development Week, there will be a number of side events taking place on 25 and 26 March 2017.

These events, including the annual Adedeji Lecture Series, with inspiring discussions and solutions, will be held in parallel over the two days.

Africa’s Ministers of Finance, Economic Development and Planning attend the Conference.

Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA).