The fifth African Economic Conference designed to bring policy-makers, researchers, academics and development experts ended on Friday, October 29, 2010, after intense discussions on key development issues facing the continent.
Closing the event, the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group chief economist, Mthuli Ncube, underscored the importance of good governance, infrastructure and private sector development, internal resource mobilization and the urgent need for national governments to create the appropriate business environments that will help give the continent's economies a shot in the arm. He also stressed that microfinance institutions as well as small and medium enterprises had a critical role in development efforts on the continent, pointing to achievements by the Kenya's microfinance sector.
He used the occasion to thank the UNDP, the ECA and the Development Bank of Southern Africa for their contributions to the success of the three-day event, underscoring the determination of all the institutions involved to sustain the annual party of ideas that is serving as an appropriate platform for policy-makers, media experts and researchers to share perspectives on development challenges facing the continent.
This year's event was held on the theme: "Setting the Agenda for Africa's Economic Recovery and Long-Term Growth", and it brought together African central bank governors and senior government policy advisers.
It was jointly organized by the AfDB and the UNECA, in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (SABC).
Key figures at this year’s conference included the World Trade Organization Director-General, Pascal Lamy, Tunisian Prime Minister, Mohammed Ghannouchi, as well as finance ministers and central bank governors from various African countries.
Over its five years, the AEC has become a premier forum on African Development issues, serving as a bridge between knowledge and policy-making on the continent.