The first edition of the Rebranding Africa Forum (RAF), that was held in 2014, highlighted the required transformations in view of the emergence of the African continent, and the possible leading pathways. It thus emerged that investment and entrepreneurship should be the driving forces. The second edition addressed the issues relating to the entrepreneurship, as well as the different propitious investment sectors in Africa and for Africa. Education, natural resources, raw materials, water, energy, agriculture or the industry. Such are the sectors on which RAF 2015 highlighted the importance for Africa and the immense economic and financial potential for investors. The upcoming editions of RAF have as intention to explore how to invest, and is investing on each of the identified sectors, in order to accelerate the process of emergence of the continent.
Using figures, the second edition of RAF helped to tackle, one of the major structural obstacles of development and emergence of the African continent, the significant phase shift or the paralysing disproportion between economic growth and demographic growth. If it maintains its current growth rate of 3%, the average perspectives of the United Nations indicate that the African population could quadruple by the end of the century, from a billion today to 4,2 billion in 2100. We have to be able to meet the needs and aspirations of the population.
Africa, for some years now, has one of the highest economic growth rates in the world, but the growth benefits are inevitably absorbed by a demographic explosion which requires tremendous amounts of resources. For this reason, the economic growth is difficult to be inclusive, to show off the effects of the emergence or emancipations and stem widespread poverty. This creates numerous problems that weaken the continent; famine, malnutrition, under-education and illiteracy, unemployment, youth crime, corruption, migratory outflow, and now, terrorism.
It is therefore important for Africa to better exploit her enormous natural and human potential in such a way to proportionally give herself the means to nourish her increasing population, to educate them, to train them, to treat them, to create enough jobs, or to produce enough energy to meet the needs and manifold expectations. How do we get there? At this point, depending on the region, and in a concerted way, more than before, there is an emergency to initiate or to accelerate the second industrialisation of Africa.
How to meet these challenges? This is the focus point of the third edition of RAF which will bring together, from 13 to 15 October 2016 in Brussels, political decision makers, economic actors, investors, entrepreneurs and experts worldwide to discuss on three discussion panels.