By Scoop Reporter
THE African Union says the world’s trade with Africa should no longer be concentrated on raw material extraction but genuine partnership and investments that yield mutually beneficial trading relationships.
Principal Advisor to the African Union Commissioner for Economic Development, Trade, Industry and Mining Jean Bertrand Azapmo says the trend of extracting raw materials out of Africa and the inability to process mineral resources robs away millions of jobs that were supposed to alleviate unemployment on the continent.
He indicated that Africa has got capacity to be a trade and investment leader of the world if it moves away from just being an exporter of raw materials to a producer of finished products.
Speaking on the side-lines of the just ended Brazil Africa Forum in Sao Paulo, Mr. Azapmo hailed the Brazilian companies operating on the continent for not adopting undesired irresponsible behaviour like being involved in illicit financial flows and ill treatment of their workforce as some other investors are doing across Africa.
“As African Union we expect the Brazilian’s good conduct of doing trade with Africa to continue upholding a socially acceptable trade conduct. Africa is also keen on curbing illicit financial flows which deprive the continent of over 1 billion United States dollars every year,” Mr. Azapmo said.
Mr. Azapmo indicates that if the cooperation continues on the honest path, trade and investment is likely to increase between Africa and Brazil as well as setting an example of what could be a mutually beneficial south to south cooperation.
“Africa must identify sectors which Brazil could invest their technology and expertise in order to grow trade and investment between the two sides. For example, if we talk about Agro processing Brazil has vast expertise; Zambia and Zimbabwe are planning to venture in such collaborations, it would be great if they reached out to Brazil for technical support,” he said.
This is contained in a statement made issued by First Secretary-Press at the Embassy of the Republic of Zambia to Brazil Lloyd Kapusa.