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ECOWAS HCD members to attend 3-day technical conference

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The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission is holding a three-day technical conference on Human Capital Development (HCD) from 8th -10th May in Accra Ghana to engage with Member States’ focal points, partners and ECOWAS technical staff around the importance of prioritizing HCD in social and economic agendas at the regional as well as the national levels. It will review progress towards the development and the implementation of the ECOWAS HCD strategy.

The 2024 ECOWAS HCD Technical Conference will gather Member State HCD focal points, technical staff from the Commission, and key stakeholders with demonstrated expertise and interest in HCD. External financial and technical partners from institutions such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), the Tony Blair Institute (TBI), the World Bank, UNDP, the African Development Bank, Africa Practice, and FCDO will also be in attendance with the aim of fostering knowledge sharing and closer collaboration.

Approved by Heads of State in July 2021, the Human Capital Development strategy sets out the ambitious objective for ECOWAS to become the top HCD performer in sub-Saharan Africa by 2030. The strategy focuses on critical areas such as Health and Nutrition, Education, Skills and Labor Market Participation, Entrepreneurship, Financial Inclusion, and Digital Economy.

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It should be recalled that, ECOWAS created an HCD index to monitor on a periodic basis, progress not only by the region but also by Member States towards the 2030 set objectives. The first biennial HCD Report presenting the results was produced in 2022 and ECOWAS will release the second report in June 2024.

Human Capital Development is a key condition in achieving both regional and national social and economic development goals. Therefore, the ECOWAS Commission HCD secretariat in close collaboration with its Member States is embarked in the execution of actions/initiatives yielding rapid outcomes in support the achievement of 2030 targets. Currently, three (3) Member States have produced national HCD strategy documents, six (6) are in the process of developing their respective national HCD strategies, and four (4) are working with the ECOWAS Commission towards developing their national HCD strategies.

The ECOWAS Human Capital Development technical conference comes at a crucial time as the regional strategy is transitioning into its second phase, which aims at enhancing the visibility as well as jump starting the implementation of HCD interventions at both regional and national levels.

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