By Staff Reporter
AFRICAN countries are looking for inventive ways and means to fill the annual development financing gap of US$92,8 billion.
This will enable the continent to implement the 2030 Agenda, achieve Agenda 2063, actualise the Paris Agreement as well as respond to the Covid-19 crisis whilst also tackling the growing levels of inequality.
This was revealed by Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) chief of green and blue economy section technology, climate change and natural resources management Nassim Oulmane while presenting a paper during a meeting of experts at the 53rd Conference of Ministers in Addis Ababa Thursday.
Oulmane noted that Africa is not yet on track to achieving most of the sustainable development goals given the current pace of implementation.
In his report, he reiterated the call on member states to strengthen regional and national innovation hubs and advance science, technology and innovation.
According to the ECA expert, the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic, alongside climate change effects, has undermined development progress and the continent’s ability to finance the sustainable development goals (SDGs) and the realisation of Agenda 2063.
“Climate change is an existential threat,” Oulmane said.
He went on to report that ARFSD7 resolved that raised ambitions, urgency and redoubled efforts in implementing the Paris Agreement alongside full, effective and timely implementation of the SDGs remained the best pathways to achieving shared prosperity, responding to Covid-19 and tackling climate change.
To this end, a key resolution of the ARFSD affirmed that it was crucial to urgently strengthen systems to improve collection, availability, accessibility, timeliness and use of quality and disaggregated data and statistics to strengthen monitoring and reporting on the two development agendas in the context of the Decade of Action and Covid-19.
Another key resolution in his report urged African Member States to leverage the agreement establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to support increased production, create jobs, strengthen regional value chains and develop resilience to external shocks and future crises.
The report notes that the hosting of ARFSD conferences had engendered strong collaboration and cemented relations between the ECA, host Governments of Morocco in 2019, Zimbabwe in 2020, Republic of Congo in 2021, the African Union Commission (AUC), African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations System.
African Member States should leverage the Agreement establishing the AfCFTA.