On Monday I received my e-issue of the Africa Journal of Management. I found all of the articles intriguing just by reading the titles. But one of them interested me the most: “The African Union’s Agenda 2063: Aspirations, challenges, and opportunities for management research,” by Kaitlyn DeGhetto, Jacob R. Gray, and Moses N. Kiggundu. Maybe it grabbed my attention because in my last post I touched upon Agenda 2063 in relation to visa openness in African countries. If you want to have a good idea about the Agenda, this article is your reading.
Overall, the Agenda aims at promoting Africa’s “positive socioeconomic transformation.” It couldn’t be otherwise: one of the beauties of the continent is that they can’t even think of an economic transformation that’s decoupled from the social transformation. This includes governance changes, and an inclusive prosperity that elevates the socioeconomic status of all of the population – far from current reality, but that’s why we have an agenda for the next 50 years.
Another feature of the Agenda which I find very tuned to African cultures is its participatory nature. It has not been set up by a few “superior minds.” Instead, it has involved consultations with multiple stakeholders. These include the youth, women, and the African diaspora, in addition to experts from official organs and academia among others.
The Agenda is not fixed for the next 50 years – else, we would have a problem. For the time being, two documents are in place: the Agenda 2063 Framework document, and the first 10-year Implementation Plan. A document articulating how to evaluate progress, outcomes, and impact is on its way.
Key flagship projects the Agenda promotes are:
- An integrated high speed train network
- An African virtual and e-University
- Formulation of a commodities strategy
- Establishment of an annual African forum
- Establishment of the continental free trade area by 2017
- The African passport and free movement of people
- Implementation of the grand Inga Dam project
- The pan-African e-network
- Silencing the guns by 2020
- Africa outer space strategy
- Establishment of a single African air transport market
- Establishment of the African financial institutions
If these come to fruition, we’ll see a new Africa in the decades to come. Bridging the gap from vision and ambition to reality requires effective implementation. This is the Agenda’s acid test.
I plan to comment on issues related to the Agenda in coming posts: keep abreast!