Access to low cost capital key for Africa’s growth critical – HH

President Hakainde Hichilema says access to low cost capital is critical for Africa to overcome most of the challenges it is currently facing and attain its full growth potential.

President Hichilema said Africa despite the huge resource endowment that the African continent has, most of the country are still faced with low incomes, high poverty levels, low levels of human development and low levels of private investments, which are limiting them from realizing their full potential.

“Despite our resource endowments, we are yet to realize our full potential. The national incomes for African countries have remained low in addition with inequality and poverty levels being among the highest in the world. Partly, this is because our continent is characterized by huge infrastructure deficits, low levels of human development and low levels of private investment. To address this unfortunate reality, Africa needs access to low cost capital” he said.

In a speech read on his behalf by Minister of Finance and National Planning, Situmbeko Musokotwane at the opening of the Ministerial meeting of the 5th ordinary session of the Specialized Technical Committee on Finance, Monetary Affairs, Economic Planning and Integration, the president added that the poor credit rating for African Countries is leading to high cost of borrowing and lack of access to sovereign bonds.

The Head of State affirmed that one way in which the continent can only attract low cost capital by ensuring that there’s a predictable, competitive and stable economic policy environment and has urged the delegates to come up with policy options and recommendations that will help Africa address the many challenges it is facing.

“I hope your committee will delve into these issues and propose concrete home-grown policy options and recommendations regarding access to capital, debt management challenges and the rising influence of sovereign credit rating agencies. Let me emphasize that this Meeting has been charged with a noble responsibility of deliberating on fundamental issues of development and integration for the Africa we want,” he added. 

And speaking at the same event, Africa Union AU Commissioner for Economic Development, Trade, Tourism, Industry and Minerals Albert Muchanga says self-reliance is key for Africa to achieve its growth as envisioned in the Agenda 2065 and added that Africa needs to be innovative in coming up with policies that will help address the many challenges that the continent faces.