Former World Bank vice-president and chief economist Justin Yifu Lin urged African countries to adopt practical policies to step up industrialization, reports said.
Diversification and industrial upgrading are the path to prosperity in Africa and that pragmatic industrial policies, special economic zones and industrial parks are useful tools to this end, Lin said while addressing seminars of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) advisory group on trade, finance and export development in Africa.
Such an approach will enable Africa to capture the window of opportunity presented by the expected relocation of millions of labor-intensive manufacturing jobs from China as a result of increasing wages there, according to Lin, who is also a professor and the Honorary Dean of the National School of Development at Peking University China.
“The dynamic growth and rising wage in China provide a great opportunity for other developing countries to jumpstart their industrialization and dynamic growth,” he was quoted as saying in a statement released by the Afreximbank.
At the seminars on the sidelines of the Afreximbank annual general meeting held in Seychelles, former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo proposed African countries to focus efforts on the development of local enterprises and value-added local products for industrialization.