Boasting one of the world’s fastest growing economic regions with an increasingly attractive hub for foreign investment and growing middle class, the African continent today stands poised to compete in the global marketplace.
Let’s look at the bold facts:
- More than 54 countries average more than six percent growth per annum.
- Africa’s consumer spending is expected to reach more than $1 trillion by 2020, McKinsey estimates.
- Africa’s rapidly emerging middle class now comprises over 300 million people, the African Development Bank indicates.
- Compelling evidence confirms that women’s role is pivotal in African economies. At nearly 40 percent, World Bank’s Africa Competitiveness Report 2011 reports that the level of women’s entrepreneurship in Africa is higher than in any other world region.
Against the backdrop of these impressive stats, the Africa-America Institute (AAI), a New York-based international education and policy organization, will host two high-level events on September 26 and 27 in New York focusing on the theme “Jobs for Africa’s Future”.
On September 26, AAI will host its 28th Annual Awards Dinner Gala, a historic gathering honoring Africa’s only two female heads of state—Her Excellency President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of the Republic of Liberia and Her Excellency President Joyce Banda of the Republic of Malawia for their outstanding achievements. Maurice Tempelsman, former member and chair of the AAI Board of Trustees and chairman of the Board of Directors of Lazare Kaplan International, will receive an award for his decades-long support of AAI and service as a trustee.
For nearly 60 years, AAI has been dedicated to advancing education and professional training for Africans and promoting engagement between Africa and America through education, training and dialogue. The international organization counts more than 23,000 alumni of its non-degree professional training and advanced degree scholarship programs, including Wangari Maathai, the late Kenyan environmental and women’s rights activist and Nobel Laureate; Prime Minister H.E. Nahas Angula of Namibia; and President Alassane Ouattara of Cote D’Ivoire.
At the black-tie Awards Gala, AAI will recognize distinguished alumni for their contributions to Africa and the world. Dr. Thelma Awori, Former Assistant Secretary General and Director of Regional Bureau for Africa at United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and Founding Chair and Co-President of the Sirleaf Market Women’s Fund, will receive the AAI 2012 Distinguished Alumna Award. Nik Amarteifio, CEO & Chairman of Equatorial Cross Acquisitions Ltd, Lead Director of the Central Bank of Ghana and Chairman of Dannex Pharmaceuticals Ltd., Ghana Agro Foods Company, and Omni Media and owner of Citi FM Radio and The Globe newspaper of Ghana, will receive the AAI 2012 Distinguished Alumnus Award.
The next day, on September 27, AAI will co-host the 2012 Africa Business Investors Conference with UN Women, the African Women’s Development Fund and the African Business Roundtable. Heads of State from some of Africa’s fastest growing economies and top U.S. and African public and private sector leaders will meet for this exclusive, high-powered event for networking and dialogue on Africa’s emerging market potential, innovative solutions for private sector development, and the role of African women as powerful drivers of African economic development.
President John Dramani Mahama of Ghana; President Joyce Banda of Malawi; and President Michael Chilufya Sata of Zambia are confirmed keynote speakers at the Business Investors Conference. Other participants slated to participate in the conference include: Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UN Women; Cherie Blair, head of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women and former First Lady of the United Kingdom; Florizelle Lizer, United States Trade Representative for Africa; Danielle Walker, Director, Africa Business Initiative, U.S. Chamber of Commerce; and Dr. Thelma Awori, Founding Chair and Co-President, Sirleaf Market Women’s Fund, among others.
Business conference attendees must purchase a gala ticket to attend this exclusive opportunity, which is available on a first come, first serve basis.
For more information on AAI and table and ticket reservations for the AAI Awards Gala, please visit www.aaionline.org; email, email@example.com; or call (888) 483-0653. Follow AAI on Twitter and on Facebook.