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Arusha takes lead in Africa's image

The African Development Bank (AfDB) plans to bring more than 300 international journalists to Arusha where the AfDB intends to launch new efforts to re-brand the image of the African continent.
"Conflicts, Wars, Hunger and Diseases have always been synonymous with the Africa because apparently these are the topics that foreign media keep covering in association with the continent," stated Dr Wade Magatte, the head of AfDB Communications and External Relations Unit, who was here recently.

Due to that, the AfDB has arranged to bring to Tanzania more than 300 journalists and television program producers from a number of media outlets around the global to come and witness, write, as well as report and document about the other (positive) side of Africa.

"The media personnel will also take time to exchange ideas with their Tanzanian as well as East African counterparts," said the AfDB official.

Arusha City located at the heart of Africa, at the center point between Cape Town and Cairo, has been chosen to showcase this other better side of the continent.

Arusha has also been chosen to host the 2012 African Development Bank Group (AfDB) Meeting to be held from May 28 to June 1 which is set to debate Africa's growth economy and its place in emerging global landscape

The conference's theme will be 'Africa and the Emerging Global Landscape: Challenges and Opportunities.'

The meeting will bring to Arusha more than 2 000 delegates from all corners of the world and among them 80 ministers of finance, according to Dr Magatte. They are going to debate about Africa's place in a changing world.

The meeting will also cover the changes that have affected the world including the global financial and economic crisis and a stronger emphasis on green and economic inclusive growth.

Africa, too, is undergoing change, particularly as its economies continue to grow at a faster pace than other parts of the world, while its political situation also changes for the better, with more democracy and good governance.

The continent also faces the challenge of providing a better future for its youth, which accounts for some 37% of the population.

Because of the broadness of the annual meetings theme, the AfDB will address the different issues in four High Level Seminars and a High Level Debate, attended by some of the most distinguished and finest thinkers on the African economy, African society and the African political landscape.

The subjects of the four High Level Seminars include:'Opportunities and Threats of the Global Economic Crisis', 'Emerging Issues in African Economics', 'Greening the Economy' and 'Voice and Accountability

The High Level Debate will be on Innovative Financing of Infrastructure and Regional Integration post the Economic Crisis. These topics will address the opportunities presented by the changing landscape catapulting African economies as key players in the global market.

Together, they look at the challenges that paved the road and the many opportunities toward the realization of strong, inclusive and sustainable economic growth for Africa.

Africa's overall economic growth rate for 2012 is projected at 6%. Over the past ten years, six of the world's fastest-growing economies were African.

Experts have made a five-year projection that the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria, Tanzania and Zambia may grow by an average 7.2% annually.