Fri, 28 March 2014
The African continent is often viewed monolithically and through the negative lenses of drought, corruption and violence. Although many difficult obstacles remain, Africa is in the midst of a transformational moment, led by record economic growth, unprecedented foreign investment and rapid modernization. These 55 nations are, in reality, vibrant and diverse regions brimming with ingenuity, entrepreneurship and talent. Today, Africans are looking inward; utilizing the vast penetration of mobile networks and their own creativity to find inventive solutions to problems ranging from lack of banking services to rural electrification. With Africa’s outdated infrastructure grid offering $1 trillion in investment opportunities and financial services expected to grow by 40%, who will the likely players be? Where are the high and low-tech innovations taking place, and what role will they play in youth development, social activism and entrepreneurship? How does the African diaspora factor into the expansion of homegrown businesses in Africa? Do the significant challenges that stakeholders face outweigh the benefits of investing in the continent? How could African nations reposition the continent globally, based on the current economic leap?