African Development Bank (AfDB) president Akinwumi Adesina, has lauded development progress being made across the African continent, which he said is spurring economic growth.
Adesina said the African economies are growing at an average 3.7 per cent annually, showing signs of better prospects in the coming years.
He said the continent would enjoy an economic growth rate of 4.7 per cent by 2017.
“The East African bloc is leading and has shown good progress that ranges from 6 to 7 percent in recent past,” Adesina told reporters in the Kenyan capital Nairobi on Thursday.
He said Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Mozambique, DR Congo and Cote d'Ivoire were fast realising good development progress.
However, the AfDB president said the continent faced challenges from the decline in oil prices and rising domestic fiscal imbalances.
"The countries need to pay more attention to micro-economic stabilisation and rapidly have economic diversification by industrialising and not do one type of business trend year in year out,” Adesina said.
He said African countries needed to invest in industrialisation and embark on adding value to exports to be able to fetch good prices globally.
Adesina said the problem of joblessness amongst the youth in Africa was causing economic risks to the continent.
He lamented that a third of the African youth were in vulnerable employment despite graduating from public universities.
He announced that AfDB will support a project aimed at generating 25 million jobs for young Africans aged 18-35 in the next ten years.
Adesina also called on African governments to mobilize domestic resources for their development, adding that the future of Africa lies on domestic financing as opposed to external finances.