The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) said on Monday that a major cooperation agreement was made with the Angolan government on Angola’s sustainable development trajectory and macroeconomic reform agenda.
“A series of high-level talks with Angolan authorities culminated with discussions at the Presidential Palace, in which four main areas of cooperation were agreed,” the ECA said in a statement.
The four main areas include “supporting Angola restore macroeconomic stability and diversify its economy within the context of the country’s National Development Plan 2018-2022.”
Improving public debt management, increasing the share of renewable energy in the country’s energy mix, and capitalizing on the opportunities of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) are also part of the cooperation agreement.
According to the ECA, Angola’s President Joao Lourenco’s “reform agenda comprises a series of measures to render Angola’s economy more diversified and less oil-dependent — including a demarche to restructure inefficient state corporations, strengthen the country’s fiscal sustainability, reduce inflation, improve overall macroeconomic fundamentals, foster social inclusion, stem corruption and improve the business environment to stimulate foreign and local investments.”
ECA Executive Secretary Vera Songwe “congratulated the Angolan president for the bold reform measures and progress achieved so far, which if sustained, could cement Angola’s position as a leading economy in Africa,” the ECA statement said.
“We hope that Angola will be part of the community of African nations which would have ratified the AfCFTA when we meet in Niamey, next July,” Songwe said.
Songwe said the ECA “could work with the Angolan authorities to offer smart solutions which would help the country to save money that can then be channeled towards other development priorities, especially those that would contribute to social inclusion and promote inclusive growth.”
The ECA chief, who acknowledged “the positive steps” Angola had already taken to broaden its tax base, also called for “serious work towards improving public debt management including the use of local-currency denominated debt.”
The ECA also suggested that Angolan authorities “embrace the digital economy as a means to explore the creative potential of the youth and generate jobs in the service and other sectors.”
The ECA said the Angolan government plans to ratify the AfCFTA agreement before the African Union summit, scheduled for July in Niamey, capital of Niger, describing AfCFTA as “an investment opportunity for Angola to build a diversified and competitive economy.”
“Angola should use it as an opportunity to fast-track its horizontal and vertical economic diversification program,” the ECA statement said. Enditem