Founder and Chairman of Engineers and Planners Mr. Ibrahim Mahama has affirmed that Africa has enough talent to pull itself out of poverty.
He expressed this view while speaking as a distinguished Panist, at the Concordia Africa Summit 2019, in London.
Concordia Africa fosters a community of cross-sector leaders to share strategies for economic growth and lasting prosperity, on the rapidly-changing and demographically-growing African continent.
Mr. Mahama was speaking on a session dubbed ‘Investing in 21st Century Africa’.
Mahama shared that, using 25 of its current Ghanainan employees, Engineers and Planners set-up their first copper mine in Zambia. The firm was able to recoup their initial investment in 18 months.
He continued to explain that in the mining structure, the key services offered are outsourced to foreign companies. Services such as employee transport, catering ,fuel transport and supply. In the end, most of the investment amount goes back to its country of origin. What remains in Africa, is the amount used to pay salaries and taxes.
“The norm is that the concessions are given, the mine is mined, the resources are gone, taxes are paid, salaries are paid but the REAL capital does not stay in Africa.”, he asserted.
Ibrahim Mahama proposed a dialogue between stakeholders to remedy such situations, that lock out African talent.
H.E Olushegun Obasanjo was also a panelist. He offered a critical view point on the way forward for Africa’s Investment strategies, drawing from his long political career in Africa’s largest economy.
Other panelists joining the conversation were Chika Chukwujekwu the Head of Africa Business Development at Grant Thornton who was also the session moderator, and Mr. Mohammed Nyaoga, Chairman of the Board of Directors – Central Bank of Kenya. Mr. Nyaoga emphasised on the need for deliberate effort to Brand Africa and change the African narrative.
Previous speakers at the Summit include Ghana’s President H.E Nana Akufo-Addo and Rwanda’s President H.E Paul Kagame.