Africa Progress Panel

Africa Progress Panel

Deriving its origins from a key recommendation of Tony Blair’s Commission for Africa, the Africa Progress Panel (APP) was launched in April 2007 as an independent authority on Africa to focus world leaders’ attention on delivering their commitments to the continent. The Panel places particular attention on strengthening governance and the delivery of economic support. [APP objectives,] The Panel launched a major report in London on Monday 16 June entitled "Africa's Development: Promises and Prospects". [APP, Press Release: Africa Progress Panel demands action on global food crisis “reversing decades of economic progress”, 16 June 2008,] .


The Panel’s members continually assess new opportunities and threats to Africa’s development, including how far previous commitments of Africa are being met. The Panel draws on the expertise of institutions working on African issues to present an assessment of progress in the form of an annual report on the state of Africa’s development. Panel members use their judgment and experience to highlight pressing concerns, inspire honest debate amongst leaders and civil society, help mobilise resources and prompt effective action [APP Objective,] .

The Panel

The Panel is an independent and authoritative body with a membership comprising unique skills and experience. The eleven members are drawn from a range of political, economic, private sector and NGO backgrounds – all of whom have significant experience of operating in Africa and championing African issues. Panel Members serve in a personal capacity and are independent of government and other institutions while they are part of the Panel [APP, Who we are,] .

Panel Members

Kofi Annan - "Former Secretary-General of the United Nations and Nobel Laureate"

Tony Blair - "Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland"

Michel Camdessus - "Former Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund"

Peter Eigen - "Founder and Chair of the Advisory Council, Transparency International"

Bob Geldof - "Musician, Businessman, Founder and Chair of Band Aid, Live Aid and Live 8, Co-founder of DATA, former member of the Commission for Africa"

Graça Machel - "Women and children's rights activist, President of the Foundation for Community Development"

Linah Kelebogile Mohohlo - "Governor, Bank of Botswana"

Olusegun Obasanjo - "Former President of Nigeria"

Robert Rubin - "Chairman of the Executive Committee, Citigroup, former Secretary of the United States Treasury"

Tidjane Thiam - "Chief Financial Officer, Prudential Plc, former member of the Commission for Africa"

Muhammad Yunus - "Economist, Founder of Grameen Bank and Nobel Laureate"

Africa Progress Panel Report 2008

In London on Monday 16 June 2008, Kofi Annan, Michel Camdessus and Tidjane Thiam launched the Africa Progress Panel's 2008 report, "Africa's Development: Promises and Prospects". The report demanded international action to deal with the urgent threat of world food prices, while also calling for G8 leaders to take immediate steps to get their commitments to Africa back on target. It warned that the world food crisis ”"threatens to destroy years, if not decades, of economic progress"” as “"100 million people are being pushed back into absolute poverty"”. “"Unless some way can be found to halt and reverse the current trend in food prices there will be a significant increase in hunger, malnutrition, and in infant and child mortality"” [APP, Press Release: Africa Progress Panel demands action on global food crisis “reversing decades of economic progress”, 16 June 2008,] .

The report also warned that, despite progress on debt relief and significant increases in assistance by individual countries, “"the G8’s commitment to double assistance to Africa by 2010 is not likely to be fulfilled"”. The report identified a shortfall of US$ 40 billion in aid that needs to be filled if the G8 is to meet the targets set at the G8 summit at Gleneagles in 2005 ["ibid"] .

The report highlighted six policy areas that they believed required immediate attention at the upcoming G8 Summit in Hokkaido, Japan, and made the following recommendations [APP Report: Africa's Development: Promises and Prospects,] :

The food crisis – "a range of measures must be undertaken to increase the quantity of food on international markets and to provide greater financial assistance to international agencies such as the World Food Programme and to the governments of affected countries."

Aid levels and aid quality – "G8 countries must urgently fund shortfalls against their targets to double assistance to Africa by 2010; these increases must be accompanied by clear timetables and increased transparency in order to improve the quality of aid"

Trade - "countries must immediately review arrangements for stockpiling food, while a comprehensive rethinking of trade policy is needed to boost agricultural production around the world"

Climate change – "the G8 must increase funding for renewable energy and invest in adaptation and the prevention of deforestation"

Infrastructure – "cited by the private sector as its most serious constraint, strategies to connect farmers to markets must be developed in conjunction with efforts to increase access to water and improve sanitation"

Good governance – "while there has been significant success in improving governance, the resolution of current crises requires greater and more consistent efforts by the African Union, individual African governments and the international community as a whole"

Focusing on the emergence of new trading partners with Africa, the report stated that China and other new entrants have brought the continent “"new dynamism and significant new resources"”, creating “"greater opportunities for Africa’s development"”. However, it counsels that “"if Africa’s development is to stay on track, it is crucial for both old and new actors to comply with agreed-upon principles of co-operation in the areas of aid, trade, development finance, and debt sustainability"” [APP, Press Release: Africa Progress Panel demands action on global food crisis “reversing decades of economic progress”, 16 June 2008,] .

Related Articles

* [, Africa: Trade Reforms Can Cut Food Prices, 18 June 2008]

* [ Business Day (South Africa), Africa at crossroads as food crisis menaces gains, 17 June 2008]

* [ Daily Nation (Kenya), Africa urgently needs a green revolution, 17 June 2008]

* [ Daily Graphic, (Ghana), Highlight Positive Gains Of The Continent, 16 June 2008]

* [ New Times (Rwanda), Highlight Positive Gains Of The Continent, 16 June 2008]

* [ Independent (UK), Lottery plan to raise cash for Africa, 17 June 2008]

* [ The Sun (UK), Blair: ‘Don’t forget Africa’, 16 June 2008]

* [ The Observer (UK), $40bn shortfall in Africa aid endangers 5 million lives, 15 June 2008]

* [ The Washington Post (USA), Panel Urges G-8 to Increase Africa Aid, 16 June 2008]

* [ Le Monde (France), Le G8 ne tient pas ses promesses de doubler l'aide à l'Afrique, 17 June 2008]

* [$Db=Archives/ArchivesProxy.nsf La Tribune (France), Afrique : le G8 doit tenir ses promesses, 16 June 2008]

* [ The Parliament Magazine (Brussels), EU must address poverty in Africa, says former UN chief, 16 June 2008]

* [ L’espresso (Italy), Africa affamata, 25 June 2008]

* [ Heidenheimer Neue Presse (Germany), Warnung vor dem nächsten Trauerspiel, 23 June 2008]
* [ Gieβener Anzeiger (Germany), "Afrika ist im Moment von vier großen Krisen bedroht", 21 June 2008]

* [ Cinco Dias (Spain), Oportunidades para África, 16 June 2008]

See also

Commission for Africa


External Links

* [ Africa Progress Panel Website]

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