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Africa: President Jammeh Calls for Technology Transfer to Africa
Source: The Daily Observer
Source Date: Monday, June 03, 2013
Focus: ICT for MDGs, Internet Governance
Country: Gambia
Created: Jun 04, 2013

The Gambian leader has called on the government of Japan to work with the African Union and Africa, and as well through TICAD to transfer technologies to Africa that will conform to Africa's produce so that its raw materials can be processed in the continent, to enable its citizens have the right to be independent from the world market.

His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr Yahya Jammeh made these remarks Saturday afternoon during a plenary session after the opening of the Fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) Summit being held at the Yokohama Conference Centre in Japan.

He said: "Africa deserves all the support in the world so that it will be able to cast off its seemingly perennial role as net exporter of primary commodities and net importer of industrial products."

He also acknowledged that Japan has been giving assistance to The Gambia and also helped so many African countries out of poverty without any strings attached.

"The indivisible world market every year forecast prices for raw materials from Africa and you will realise that most countries that buy African raw materials especially the agricultural goods, are being enjoyed by those that did not process it," the Gambian leader further stated.

President Jammeh also pointed out that, it is an inevitable fact that one would realise that those companies that process African agricultural produce like coffee are wealthier than even all African coffee producing countries put together, "How is that possible?" President Jammeh queried, while stressing that for Africa to have an economy that is robust, sustainable and beneficial to her people, industrialisation is indispensable.

He added: "Value addition is also indispensable and thank God Japan is a highly industrialised country and we should work with TICAD and other institutions affiliated to it and produce such technologies that can be used even in rural areas for processing and value addition of African produce. When we have that then we would be able to have sustainable economies."

He noted that while most African countries have robust economies, they are not sustainable because the determining factor is not in their hands. He said that for African farmers to be wealthy like European farmers, they must be in a position to price their own produce, since what they produce is exported as raw.

"The indomitable world market fixes the price for African farmers' produce and when it is processed sends it back to them in Africa at a different price that you either take it or leave it. Unless we are independent of this indivisible world market, we would not be able to have sustainable economy. We may have robust economy but its sustainability is questioned and we will not be able to extricate ourselves from abject poverty," the Gambian told the meeting. He also used the opportunity to thank the Gambian delegation and the host country [Japan] through its prime minister for organising TICAD and for the warm welcome accorded to them.

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