Last year the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, which I co-chair, released its report setting a clear roadmap for eradicating extreme poverty. We recommended that the post-2015 goals be driven by five big transformative shifts. One of these shifts is a profound economic transformation to improve livelihoods by harnessing innovation, technology, and the potential of businesses. We concluded that more diversified economies, with equal opportunities for all, would drive social inclusion, especially for young people, and foster sustainable consumption and production.
Nowhere is the need for such a transformative shift greater than in Africa. Recognizing this imperative, the African heads of state and government recently endorsed the African Union’s transformation vision for 2063. The key dimensions of that vision are to address the structural transformation of Africa’s output and trade, strengthen Africa’s infrastructure and human resources, and modernize Africa’s science and technology.
I commend the African Center for Economic Transformation for preparing this welcome report. It looks at transformation as a broad framework for growth and development and identifies best practices from Africa and beyond. It will be of great value to African policymakers as they draw up action plans to transform their economies and ensure that growth is sustained to improve the lives of an increasing number of Africans, consistent with the AU’s transformation vision. And by setting a transformation agenda, it will contribute to international discussions on the strategies and priorities for achieving many of Africa’s post-2015 development goals.
Five years ago, I welcomed ACET’s establishment in the expectation that it would give new meaning to African ownership of Africa’s destiny. With this report, ACET has earned that recognition.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
President, Republic of Liberia
Co-chair, UN High Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda