Appointment with history.
Over 1200 economic and institutional traders, from 15 African countries are meeting in Casablanca, Morocco, in occasion of the third “International African Development Forum”, to talk about the prospects of the development of Africa.
The common impression is that the continent is experiencing a crucial moment in its socio-economic history. The steady growth of the economy, the emergence of a new middle class, the abundant availability of agricultural and natural resources: these are the ingredients that are predicting, for Africa, a future leading role on the international stage. The theme chosen for the forum was “The time to invest”, to underline the importance of acting promptly and professionally in order to identify the levers of growth on which to focus.
Amadou Ba, Minister of Economy and Finance of Senegal, has pointed out that, at this stage, the most important challenge for African countries is to be able to “network”, to discuss and communicate, to pool their resources and economies, all different but highly complementary.
Presenting itself as compact and united would also create certain advantages in international relations, as reiterated by Amadou Gon Coulibal, Secretary General of the Presidency of the Ivory Coast, speaking of possible trade agreements between African states and the European Union.
The strategic role of Morocco.
After the success of the previous two editions (2010 and 2012), Morocco has chosen to organize and host the third round of the International African Development Forum in order to continue to establish itself as a strategic player in this extremely dynamic historical moment. The North African country is already a first class economic and financial hub in the continent, a bridge connecting trade with Europe, the US and Asia with those in sub-Saharan Africa.
The ambitions of Morocco are obvious, King Mohammed VI also has attested to that, after having said some time ago that the economic development of Morocco
“has come to the point of allowing the country to be considered fully and definitely amongst the emerging countries.”
Strong leadership, also in the socio-political area. In its path Morocco can count on the support of major international organizations. For example, on last February 23rd , the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) approved the first “Strategic Plan for Morocco”, intended to accelerate the growth of the country. In the last 2 years, the EBRD has invested 380 million euro in Morocco, financing 17 development projects, and has provided credit facilities totaling 130 million euro.