UN agency projects 50% increase in Africa’s e-commerce

Oluwanifemi Ojo
Oluwanifemi Ojo
United Nations

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa has said that Africa’s  e-commerce is projected to increase by 50 percent by 2025

The Punch reported that the Acting Executive Secretary, UNECA, Mr Antonio Pedro, disclosed this at the opening of the 9th Session of the Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development in Niamey, Niger.

He added that making investments in capacity building will be essential to achieving the expansion of e-commerce on the continent.

As a result, he asserted that making an investment in capacity building would be essential to fulfilling this promise.

Pedro said, “By adopting appropriate standards and emphasising the value of sustainable value chains, we can maximise the job creation potential on our continent.”

Speaking about the impact of technology, he said Africa’s accelerated transformation will also be fueled by digital technologies.

According to The Punch, the acting executive secretary also said that there is a need for investment in large-scale infrastructure  while also adopting viable policies and strategies both nationally and regionally.

In his words, “We must end the digital divide, particularly along gender lines, to ensure true inclusion, and to truly unleash the potential of the fourth industrial revolution.”

Meanwhile, he said the continent must consider obstacles to delivering on the Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2063.

According to him, “We must accelerate, and to do so we need to recognise the obstacles to be overcome. This year we are revisiting the Sustainable Development Goals 6, 7, 9, 11 and 17.”

Pedro said that the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement has been initiated to boost Africa’s economic development. “It is the framework under which Africa could ensure an African-owned transformation,” he stated.

Speaking about the forum, the executive secretary said, “It will be a moment to discuss how the 28 national AfCFTA strategies that have been completed so far with our support, and under the leadership of the African Union Commission, can be mainstreamed in the work of the UN Country Teams.”

The Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr Monique Nsanzabaganwa, urged the forum to make specific recommendations regarding the SDGs and Agenda 2063.

In her words,  “We need to dramatically upscale financing available for both the SDGs and the Agenda 2063 and these findings are also to address climate resilience. We need to go beyond development aid, and this is at the heart of the green recovery action plan.

“Upscaling finance is also to improve domestic resource mobilisation and exploring innovative sources of financing.”

The deputy chairwoman added that it would be crucial to hasten AfCFTA implementation as well as deal with Africa’s sustainable industrialization and economic diversification.

According to The Punch, she emphasized that resilience must be incorporated into the delivery of the SDGs and the execution of Agenda 2063, and that both must be done with and for the youth.

In her words, “The youth should, therefore, be actively engaged in and empowered for the design in the implementation policies, plans and programmes for both agenda.

“In so doing, implementation will leverage the creativity and energy of our young people.”

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