Allafrica.com

The 27th World Economic Forum on Africa, which will take place next week, will focus on achieving inclusive growth.

The WEF will take place at the Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban from 3 to 5 May 2017 under the theme ‘Achieving Inclusive Growth: Responsive and Responsible Leadership’.

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Cabinet has welcomed this opportunity for South Africans to engage in dialogue on potential investment opportunities, deeper regional integration and a renewed commitment towards sustainable growth and development in Africa.

“Africa is home to some of the world’s fastest growing economies which have attracted increasing interest from global investors. South Africa is the most diversified economy on the continent and plays an integral role in Africa’s advancement,” said Communication Minister Ayanda Dlodlo during a post Cabinet briefing on Friday.

According the WEF on Africa website, Africa is facing a mixed outlook for growth.

The economic growth forecast for the continent over the coming year is expected to be lower than the 5% average of the past decade.

This is largely due to the dip in commodity prices and the economic slowdown in China.

That said, a number of countries are growing above 6% per annum and foreign direct investment inflows continue to rise.

Overall, the divergence of Africa’s economies makes it imperative to address the challenges posed by a growing unemployed youth population and climate change, among others.

According to the WEF, the impact of the headwinds for commodity-dependent countries has refocused attention on the urgency of economic diversification, revitalization of manufacturing and harnessing of human innovation in order to weather the economic storm.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution offers new opportunities to achieve inclusive and sustainable growth by fast-tracking market integration in Africa through industrial corridors.

Events in Africa and across the world have demonstrated a need for leaders to be responsive to the demands of the people who have entrusted them to lead, and to also provide a vision and a way forward.

The meeting will convene regional and global leaders from business, government and civil society to agree priorities that will help Africa achieve inclusive growth.