Africa ‘on the right track’

02 February 2015

President Jacob Zuma says infrastructure is the way to go towards sustainable development and Africa is on the right track.

Zuma was addressing the 32nd Summit of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (Nepad) Heads of State Governments and Orientation Committee as the chairperson of the Presidential Infrastructure Championing Initiative (PICI).

“With solid and efficient infrastructure, we can without doubt reach the much sought after and almost magical 7% growth rate per annum – a good starting point for Africa,” he said.

He said infrastructure investment spending has quadrupled, exports have increased and Africa is receiving a growing share of foreign direct investment.

While investing in regional infrastructure, governments should still invest in national infrastructure, as this facilitates industrial production and national trade.

PICI is tasked with making infrastructure projects work, unblocking bottlenecks and any political impasse, providing leadership in resource mobilisation and subsequently ensuring speedy implementation of projects.

South Africa is involved in the North-South Corridor — a multi-modal and multi-dimensional infrastructure corridor that includes road, rail, border posts, bridges, ports, energy and other related infrastructure — which passes through 12 countries.

The PICI Ministerial Working Group met on 16 January 2015 and recommended inclusion of energy projects such as the Strategic North-South Transmission Line, the Sahel Desert Tech Solar Project, the Central Power Transmission Line and the identification of champions for these projects.

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