The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has set May 13, for the launch the African Governance Report (AGR-V) titled ‘Natural resource governance and domestic revenue mobilization for structural transformation’.
The report examines efforts to improve the governance of continent’s abundant natural resources, with emphasis on strengthening natural resource governance institutions and frameworks to boost domestic revenue mobilization and engender economic growth.
Mr Francis Ikome, ECA Chief of Governance in the Macroeconomic Policy Division, in a paper made available to the Ghana News Agency (GNA), said it ‘addresses four broad issues’.
They are; the resource-rich countries’ inability to transform their economies; the institutions for improving the development impact of the natural resources; raising domestic revenue; and development planning and policy outcomes.
Domestic revenue mobilization, he said, must be strengthened because ‘it can be a powerful tool for achieving national ownership of development strategies as well as deepening participation of domestic firms in regional and global value chains, and for boosting the state’s capacity to provide public goods and services,’.
Mr. Ikome added that the quality of institutions was a deciding factor on whether natural resource wealth became a ‘blessing or a curse for inclusive and transformational development, peace and security, deeper democracy and environmental protection’.
‘When institutions collapse or malfunction, the consequence may be disorder for our countries hence the report is a must-have for our policymakers and other stakeholders.’
He pointed out that Africa had been slow to convert its natural resources endowments to tangible development outcomes because of weaknesses in governance.
A capable state with legitimacy and political will, he said, was needed to minimize harm from exploiting resources and to maximize the benefits to the population.
He asked that institutions should be held accountable for their decisions and must ensure that decision-making processes were transparent and widely participatory.
Mr. Abdalla Hamdok, the ECA’s Deputy Executive Secretary and Chief Economist, would be participating in the meeting that would discuss the findings of the AGR-V and its key recommendations.
It is the most comprehensive report on governance in Africa – assesses and monitors the progress of the countries on governance, identifies capacity gaps in governance institutions and proposes policies and strategic interventions to improve governance on the continent.