01 Jun 2013


Africa Looks Ahead

Nigeria's finance minister comments on Africa's needs at recent U.N. Conference

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At a UN meeting in Liberia to discuss a framework for development after the UN's millennium goals expire in 2015, Nigeria's finance minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (TGMP 2, 1997), reflected on Africa's needs: "How do you transform the economy? You've got to provide the basic infrastructure for people to transform their own lives. You're killing many birds with one stone. If people have power, the welder in the rural area can make money, a woman can make money, children can read, health centers can have cold-storage facilities" (Guardian, February 1, 2013). Acknowledging that funding such infrastructure will be a challenge, she said "we can't be dependent on donors" but must look to establishing more public-private partnerships, a move that will require governments to create "enabling environments" attractive to investors.

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