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Optimism about Africa

Pankaj Savara, Commissioner - Middle East & Africa for the Government of Western Australia

"I am optimistic about Africa - it has fast growing middle class, the number of people coming online, youngest population and most resilient people."

Bience Gawanas special adviser on Africa to the UN Secretary-General is optimistic about Africa’s future.  She sees the three top 2020 opportunities as:

"the greatest opportunity right now is the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) that came into effect a few months ago. Africa has the potential to be one of the biggest markets in the world. But we need to trade amongst ourselves as Africans.

"The second opportunity is the “Silencing the Guns in Africa” initiative, one of the priority projects of the AU’s Agenda 2063. The AU’s theme for 2020 will be “Silencing the Guns,” and there will be a renewed campaign to accelerate the initiative.

"Another area of opportunity for me is climate change. For the first time more people are getting involved and discussing climate change like never before. The reality is with us. The UN Climate Action Summit convened by the Secretary-General last September saw many countries join the climate action agenda. Young people across the African continent are saying, “The future is ours.”

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