Mthuli Ncube, African Development Bank Chief Economist and Vice-President
This event takes place at a time when Africa has experienced an unprecedented growth and is poised to become the next growth pole. Over the last decade, six out of the world’s 10 fastest-growing economies were in Africa. Africa’s middle class is also burgeoning and is expected to grow to 1.1 billion by 2050, form the current 355 million. New technologies have enabled African countries to leapfrog the rest of the world. For example, Africa is already the fastest-growing mobile phone market with a number of countries leapfrogging the rest of the world in the use of mobile banking technologies like East Africa’s M-Pesa, enabling millions of poor Africans to have access to financial services. The opportunities couldn’t be greater. As Africa’s premier development finance organization, the African Development Bank Group remains ever committed to supporting the continent’s transformation agenda. Earlier this year the Board of Directors approved the Bank Group’s Ten Year Strategy 2013–2022 that placed the Bank at the centre of Africa’s transformation. The TYS is anchored on two objectives: inclusive growth and gradual transition to green growth.