Investment is the best development policy

Flensburg, 16/12/2021: : The Austrian magazine “Society” has published a guest article by Stefan Liebing in which he analyses Africa’s potential and argues for closer cooperation with our neighbouring continent.
Contrary to clichéd expectations, the crisis-related economic decline in gross domestic product averaged just minus 1.8% in Africa. As soon as the crisis is overcome by sufficient vaccine supplies, the continent will recover quickly, economists say. In addition, attractive sales markets, a growing middle class and, in many countries, well-trained staff with comparatively low labour costs, all speak in favour of the continent.
Another opportunity for economic growth is the production of hydrogen. By generating green energy and converting it into transportable hydrogen, a number of new export countries can emerge.
Traditional development cooperation will hardly be able to help build such new structures, even if they would contribute much more sustainably to Africa’s development. Innovative financing and risk hedging instruments are necessary for its realisation. At the same time, politics should advocate for a mechanism that expands the CO2 emissions trading system and creates an Africa-Europe climate protection zone.
A new approach in Europe that thinks development and foreign economic policy together could lead to a boost in growth in Africa and strengthen economic opportunities for European companies. Africa is on the rise and we should be there.