Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta has urged African Governments to create an enabling environment to enable the private sector to participate more in the development of critical infrastructure in Africa.
The President said he was convinced that public private partnerships supported by robust national institutions to ensure accountability and transparency holds the key to closing the prevailing infrastructure gap on the continent.
The Head of State pointed out that Africa must work to address the insufficient stock of functional and quality infrastructure in energy, water and transport services to enable companies to produce competitively for both domestic and international markets.
He said good infrastructure is the backbone upon which African nations will achieve economic growth that will, in turn, create the much needed jobs for the youth as well as generate wealth to deal with the challenge of poverty.
“High quality infrastructure reduces transactional and other costs; enabling efficient use of labour and capital, but more importantly, enhancing connectivity between production points and market points,” said President Kenyatta.
The President was speaking when he officially closed the inaugural AfroChampions Boma forum on African Infrastructure Financing and Delivery organised by the AfroChampions Initiative.
The initiative is a set of innovative public-private partnerships and flagship programmes designed to galvanise African resources and institutions to support the emergence and success of African private sector in the regional and global spheres.
The initiative is driven by prominent private and public sector players in Africa.
President Kenyatta said the dream of connecting the continent cannot be realised unless viable solutions to mobilise the required infrastructure financing are found.
“We need to connect Africa, but this cannot be possible without investing in critical infrastructure,” he said, adding that African economies must also be diversified by promoting value addition and manufacturing to create job opportunities for the more than 10 million young people joining the labour market each year.
“Indeed, industrialisation is the way to go if we are to achieve and sustain shared prosperity and job creation for our peoples,” added President Kenyatta.