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Africa Loses Billions Annually

A Minister of State at the Presidency, Hon Akwasi Oppong Fosu has disclosed that Africa loses an estimated value of over $50 billion annually through mispricing of goods alone.

These losses some through illicit financial flows and associated economic crimes, tax evasion, transfer pricing and money laundering he noted has over the years deprived the continent of the much needed domestic expenditure and investment resources for her rapid economic transformation.

Mr Oppong Fosu made this disclosure when he addressed the 2015 Crans Montana Forum, which hosted the 17th International Summit on Homeland, Global Security and Transnational Crime held in Geneva Switzerland.

According to him, Africa remains a paradox described as a resource- rich but access poor partly blamable to corruption and misgovernance due to the weak regulatory framework on the part of its leaders.

He stated that Africa’s natural resource exploitation has led to poverty, unemployment and environmental degradation.

The minister noted that HIV/AIDS and the recent Ebola epidemics continued to fuel social and political tensions in Africa resulting in threats to global security and peace.

Hon Oppong Fosu, who is also the Member of Parliament for the Amenfi East constituency, stated that the annual illicit financial transfers from the continent are estimated to be as double what Africa receives the so-called developed world as the Overseas Development Assistance.

This he said has rendered Africa with less resource to fight poverty and deprivation through the provision of basic services that are much needed for her economic and social infrastructure growth for improvement of the standard of living for her populace.

He revealed that the African Union has established a High-Level Panel on Illicit Financial Flows from Africa to help check the drain on the continent.

Hon Oppong Fosu noted the menace pose a threat to global peace and security and called for concerted efforts from the global community to protect the continent from exploitation.

However, Mr Oppong Fosu stated that Africa`s economic prospects over the last decade remain very high and very optimistic for the future growing at a faster rate.

“On the economic front, Africa is transforming very fast with a rapid and sustained economic growth over the last decade. Many African countries continue to grow at a fast pace averaging 4.5% in 2014 and projected to grow at 5.1% this year ‘’ he stated.

He called on all well-meaning Nations to help protect Africa which is becoming a major target for the threat of terrorism and associated crime since Africa represents tomorrow’s alternative for the globe.

Among the several topics discussed at the 2015 Crans Montana Forum includes; Global security and terror threats: The need for regional and international cooperation, Security challenges in the energy and transport sector: Protecting energy supply chains.

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By Christian Kpesese

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