United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres will this week launch the Global Africa Business Initiative (GABI) at a conference aimed to create a new roadmap for Africa that highlights business opportunities and development across sectors.
Organized by the UN Global Compact in partnership with the African Union, UNDP Africa, the UN Economic Commission for Africa and the UN Office of the Special Advisor on Africa, the two-day launch event is taking place in New York from September 18–19 on the sidelines of the opening of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
“The Global Africa Business Initiative is about Africa’s leaders resetting the global narrative and positioning key partnerships to deliver inclusive sustainable growth for people and the planet,” said Amina J. Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General. “The next chapter for Africa begins by creating bridges for new opportunities, where Africans take to the global stage to tell their own stories and develop powerful economic engines – on their own terms.”
Under the headline Unstoppable Africa, GABI advances the conversation about economic growth and investment opportunities by highlighting business opportunities and development across sectors. Every sector of the continent’s economy—from manufacturing, to agriculture, to services, to finance—holds the promise of economic prosperity. The conference features robust deep dives to better understand Africa’s business ecosystem and highlight insights that catalyze new and dynamic financing models and bold partnerships.
The Global Africa Business Initiative, supported by Afreximbank, Google, Rockefeller Foundation and Mastercard Foundation, brings together nearly a 100 leaders across politics, economic development, fashion, sports, arts, and music. Speakers include H.E. Alassane Ouattara, President of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire; UN Secretary General António Guterres; Vera Songwe, former Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Africa; Ngozi
Okonjo-Iweala, Director-General of the World Trade Organization; Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet and Google; Adam Silver, CEO of the National Basketball Association; Bela Bajaria, Head of Global TV Netflix; Masai Ujiri, Vice Chair and President of the Toronto Raptors; Robert Smith, Vista Equity Partners; Melinda Gates, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation; Strive Masiyiwa, businessman and philanthropist;
Angélique Kidjo, musician and activist; Omoyemi Akerele, Founder, Style House Files and Lagos Fashion Week.
“The Global Africa Business Initiative is an opportunity for Africa and its leaders to articulate their vision for an ambitious future and build on the momentum to accelerate the continent’s economic and social development,” said Sanda Ojiambo, Assistant Secretary-General and CEO of the UN Global Compact. “When Africa wins, the world also wins and together we can articulate and build a sustainable future for generations to come.”
The Africa Continental Free Trade Area Agreement will play a key role to fuel trade and investment opportunities within the continent as well as the world. Easier trade across borders, investment in renewable energy and the emergence of Africa’s creative and cultural industry opens up a wide range of not-to-be-missed business opportunities. GABI brings together African heads of state, UN leadership and philanthropy, as well as CEOs and key players from the private sector to activate a powerful business ecosystem that promotes prosperity to all Africans
and citizens of the world. The event is poised to mark the beginning of a growing dialogue with and among African leaders on the continent’s impact on global growth.