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LIDC Experts Debate Latest African Economic Outlook


LIDC researchers spoke at a high profile discussion which focused on the commodity boom and training challenges set out in this year’s African Economic Outlook. They referred to their own work, spanning agriculture, education and economics, at the event organised by Chatham House. LIDC members Professor Jeff Waage, Director of LIDC, Moses Oketch, Senior Lecturer in Educational Planning at the Institute of Education, and Professor Machiko Nissanke, of the Economics Department at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), took part in the debate in London on 25 June.




According to the African Economic Outlook (AEO), 2008, average GDP growth in Africa will rise to 6 per cent in 2008 and 2009, compared to 5.7 per cent in 2007. The report also concentrates on the need to develop skills and vocational training in the continent. Currently, 133 million young people are illiterate in Africa and more than 20 per cent of young people are unemployed in sub-Saharan Africa. This year the AEO was launched in Maputo, Mozambique, at the 43rd African Development Bank Annual Meetings on May 11.


The annual report, now in its seventh year, is jointly produced by the OECD’s Development Centre, the African Development Bank and the UN's Economic Commission for Africa. The AEO has expanded from initially covering 22 countries to analysing 35 this year. It is particularly valuable as Africa is rarely studied in such a comprehensive and comparative way.





Other speakers at the Chatham House event included Ransford Smith, Commonwealth Deputy Secretary-General; Kenneth Ruffling, AEO Coordinator, OECD Development Centre; Indrajit Coomaraswamy, Director, Economic Affairs Division, Commonwealth Secretariat; and Christian Kingombe, Economist, OECD Development Centre.