Africa urged to wean off grant reliance


African countries should lay far less emphasis on grants and aid in order to pull themselves out of poverty, the head of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) said on Thursday.

Benedict Oramah, president of Afreximbank, said instead of relying on aid and grants, African countries should emphasize belief in themselves and in their ability to use their abundant resources.

“Grants never pull a people out of poverty; rather they perpetuate the culture of dependence,” he said when delivering a lecture at New York University, according to an emailed statement.

According to him, a critical piece on the path to greatness for Africa hinged on fostering intra-African trade and on de-commoditization of the continent’s exports, adding that the bank has launched a strategy to promote intra-Africa trade.

The bank’s intra-African trade strategy, he said, was driven by a philosophy that building solid export manufacturing capacities and domestic, as well as continental, supply chains would facilitate an increase in the flow of goods and services across borders in Africa and between Africa and Africans in the diaspora.

Priority under the strategy include deepening access to trade information, formalizing informal intra-African trade by supporting the emergency and growth of export trading companies to serve as institutional vehicles for intra-African trade, he added. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/

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