ECA holds annual meeting with development partners

UNECA - Monday 17th July, 2017
The Economic Commission for Africa presented its key achievements at its annual meeting with its group of development partners on 7 July, highlighting its continued support to the member States for the 2016 reporting period and the focus into 2017. Central to its delivery has been an integrated and coherent approach, basing policy recommendations on evidence; factoring gender implications in analysis and recommendations; and paying attention to capacity development of beneficiaries. Leading the exchange with the partners was the ECA Acting Executive Secretary, Mr. Abdalla Hamdok.

The meeting learnt that the ECA continued to focus on enhancing complementarity and development impact with a view to responding better to the evolving needs of its member States within the context of new and emerging opportunities and challenges. The partnership strategy that informs this focus is framed on the premise that Africa's development challenges and its transformative agenda are so huge that no single institution or organization, no matter how well resourced, is capable of addressing them alone.

Consequently, noted the meeting, this approach to partnerships is forging more strategic and results-based collaborative alliances. Partnerships go beyond mobilization of financial resource, noted the meeting stressing that this includes "sharing ideas and knowledge, developing synergies, building on comparative advantages and avoiding duplication of efforts."

The meeting noted that the Commission's expertise has been significantly required by member States to ensure policy coherence in the implementation of these development frameworks and to effectively integrate them in national development plans. For instance, ECA conducted training for a total of 594 public officials from 48 African countries. As a result of the training, at least 17 African member States have adopted new or enhanced approaches to economic policy formulation and management in line with the guidelines and recommendations. Additionally, numerous public sector departments have adopted both appropriate development planning approaches and new related policies and tools recommended by the ECA.

Expectations by member States continue to grow with the continental and global development frameworks, Agenda 2063, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA), and the Paris Agreement on climate change, which the meeting noted, represent key opportunities for the region to advance its transformative development priorities.

Other examples include the Commission's work on the Green economy and Blue economy, which have opened new opportunities to advance inclusive and job-creating growth while ensuring adequate and balanced attention to the three dimensions of sustainable development.

According to the presentation made at the meeting, they offer a source of emerging opportunities for the Commission to promote structural transformation in Africa through enhanced knowledge, innovation, synergies and optimization of leading sectors, to include agriculture, fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, transport, ports, coastal mining, and energy.

Development seminars and policy dialogue sessions attracted 550 participants including public officials, policymakers, experts, academics, and representatives from the private sector and civil society from across the continent and beyond. These events provided an occasion to reflect on how to improve development policies, noted the session. They also focused on challenges and opportunities pertaining to the structural transformation agenda, such as the developmental State, industrialization, intra-African trade, private sector development, land policy and governance, natural resources management, minerals fiscal policy, international economic negotiations, corporate governance and migration for development.

Most importantly, the events served to influence policy in domains ranging from minerals, industry, regional integration and trade, agriculture, public debt, public finance, resource mobilization and investment.

Acknowledging the Commission's continued focus on structural transformation and sustainable development, the partners responded positively to the report and expressed commitment to continued partnership based on complementarity and shared interest for policy reach and influence.

Issued by:

Communications Section

Economic Commission for Africa

PO Box 3001

Addis Ababa


Tel: 251 11 551 5826