THEMES & CONVERSATIONS AT THE CAS 2018

Intra-Commonwealth Trade and Investment in a Post Brexit World

With Brexit marking another sharp turn in Britain’s policy orientation, and risking a considerable reduction in UK trade with the EU, there is a new UK interest in free trade deals cultivating wider global markets. This in turn has led Brexit supporters to a revived recognition of the hitherto neglected trade potential of the Commonwealth.

Commonwealth and the Africa’s Agenda 2063

The African Agenda 2063 and global 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development no doubt offer a unique opportunity for Africa to achieve inclusive, transformative and sustainable development, that are needed to put the continent on a sustainable development path. It is therefore important for the commonwealth to adopt an integrated and coherent strategy for the effective and coordinated implementation of the two.

Responsive and Responsible Leadership in Africa

Africa’s great potential for sustainable growth and prosperity rises and falls on leadership. Despite being home to millions of skilled and talented innovators, African leadership struggles to stimulate and retain its strongest resource — the people: They either live in unnecessary frustration or run to the West to gain appreciation.

The Commonwealth Africa Summit will therefore consolidate on the 2017 World Economic Forum on Leadership by inspiring a commonwealth involvement in Africa’s governance through public-private cooperation by working in close collaboration with key international organizations. This will include improved collective action and creation of policy options in achieving sustainable development in Africa.

Clean Energy Revolution in Africa

The World Economy Forum on Africa 2016 held in Kigali, identified inadequate financing, policy inconsistency and bureaucratic bottlenecks as some of the major problems confronting power supply in Africa.

While efforts are being doubled to increase access to power on the continent, there’s urgent need to vastly decarbonise electricity and transportation in order to limit Africa’s contribution to global warming. Participants will interact with model success stories from parts of Africa such as Morocco and South Africa; the latter already being one of the world’s top 10 producers of solar power.

Africa and the Future Agenda

The world is changing at an unprecedented rate, driven by innovation and new ways of thinking that will fundamentally change the way we live. With a growing population heading towards two billion and a workforce expected to become the world’s largest by 2040, Africa must move away from the old structures and processes that shaped its past and embrace new systems and technologies while exploring the key issues that will face its society over the next decades.

Knowledge sharing is more critical than ever now if the developing countries- members of the Commonwealth will change status. CAS 2018 will provide sessions for the sharing of ideas, innovations and discoveries that will reshape African systems by engaging those at the vanguard of change from fields such as the arts, media, medicine, science and technology, as well as the next generation of future leaders

Learning From Global Growth Models

The 2017 Commonwealth Africa Summit featured an Ethiopian Government Ambassador who spoke about the Ethiopia Growth Model and how it can be adopted in other Nations. Other countries within and outside the commonwealth will be involved this year to examine the social and economic transformations occurring in regions of the world and discuss peculiar African issues through interactions with political leaders s in various national and regional contexts.

Enabling Environment and Youth-Friendly Laws

  • A number of African countries have limits in their electoral laws, which prevent young candidates from contesting national election. Currently the Nigerian senate is being solicited to support a constitution amendment bill seeking to align the voting age of 18 years with eligibility to contest for political offices in Nigeria. This is aimed at opening the space for wider participation will in return increase quality leadership options for the electorate. Panel Discussions around this topic will explore removal of age limits in Africa’s electoral laws, increasing Youth Participation through government appointments and Representation, and addressing the lack of political patronage networks and financial resources for Youth Aspirants
  • Education and Youth Empowerment in AfricaEducation is pivotal to empowerment everywhere in the world. If African youths are to take their rightful place in political leadership, early access to quality education cannot be compromised. Africa must invest in the Education of its young and its system of education must evolve into the type that meets current day needs and challenges.The Forum Panels will explore Increasing Access to Quality Education and Promoting civic education and increased understanding of electoral processes.
  • Party Supremacy and Internal DemocracyPolitical parties in Africa remain a significant barrier to youth participation in decision-making structures through their control over who emerges as electoral candidate. This situation makes internal democracy practically impossible and gives new comers or young aspirants little or no chances. This panel will deliberate on:
    • Promoting Internal party Structures and policies that encourage youth participation
    • Facilitating Inter-party dialogue to foster broader agreements on Youth Participation
  • Gender Mainstreaming in Africa’s PoliticsIn many African countries, young women are less likely to participate in political life than young men due to gender discrimination and a political system that is male dominated. To attain An Africa of 2063 that will have full gender parity, with women occupying at least 50% of elected public offices at all levels; Stakeholders on this panel will deliberate on how bright and upwardly mobile young women can take on leadership roles in Africa’s Politics.

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