Foresight Africa: Top Priorities for the Continent in 2016
The Africa Growth Initiative and its colleagues discuss six overarching themes in this year’s Foresight Africa, that place Africa at this tipping point and give their views on what they perceive to be key areas for intervention to keep Africa on its current rising trajectory. The format this year, in 2016 is different from years past, encompassing viewpoints from high-level policymakers, academics, and practitioners, as well as utilizing visuals to better illustrate the paths behind and now in front of Africa. In the first chapter, the adverse effects of recent external economic shocks on Africa’s already slowing economic growth is covered by the authors. While threats like the economic slowdown in 2016 also brings a number of complex political and governance challenges, following on from the year before. While 2015 did see many successes (Nigeria peacefully transitioned to a new regime and the Tripartite Free Trade Agreement was signed), it also experienced upheavals (the civil wars in the Central African Republic and South Sudan raged on and the Nile riparian states continued their heated dispute). As the upcoming year could see a continuation of these trends, the fifth chapter covers how leaders might address the continuing obstacles to peace, prosperity, and good governance at both the national and regional levels in 2016. With the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, trade relationships the world over will drastically change in 2016—just as African countries are taking major steps towards regional economic integration and enacting their own export-oriented policies. The sixth and final chapter explores the changes in and implications of the shifting global trade environment on Africa’s prospects for enhancing its own competitiveness and trade performance. With the sixth annual Foresight Africa, the authors aim to capture the top priorities for Africa in 2016, offering recommendations for African and international stakeholders for creating and supporting a strong, sustainable, and successful Africa. In doing so, it is hoped that Foresight Africa 2016 will promote a dialogue on the key issues influencing economic development in Africa in 2016 and ultimately provide sound strategies for sustaining and expanding the benefits of economic growth to all people of Africa in the years ahead.