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Sep 24, 2014

President Mahama Says Africa Is Best Destination For Investment

President John Dramani Mahama on Monday stated that in spite of economic challenges and threats of diseases that bedeviled the African continent, it still remains the best destination for investment.

He said while some African countries were having deficits in their economies, others faced challenges of diseases like Ebola which is ostracizing citizens of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone

President Mahama stated this when he addressed African Heads of state investment dialogue and networking luncheon at the New York Stock Exchange as part of his 10-day official visit to the United States.

The luncheon also brought together members of various stock exchange players who would among other things share ideas and experiences in economic development.

The President said most markets in Europe, Asia and the Americas were joked up in terms of investment and job creation, and it was only Africa that had the capacity to open more centres to synchronize world trade.

On Ebola, President Mahama said response was delayed but was peaking and expressed the hope that the disease could be contained in the coming days.

He said five West African countries, namely; Togo, Nigeria, Guinea,Burkina Faso and the Ivory Coast would hold general elections next year and the leadership of ECOWAS was bracing up to meet perceived challenges.

President Mahama said although elections were becoming accepted norms in the sub region, current proposed amendments to the Constitution of Burkina Faso to make the incumbent President eligible for the next elections were worrying issues that could escalate into unexpected disturbances.

He spoke about the menace of Boko Haram in North-Eastern Nigeria and added that Ivory Coast was politically stable and could manage the 2015 general election without disturbances.

Ambassador Maged Abdelaziz, Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary on Africa, said inter and intra Africa trade was a necessity to speed up economic growth in the continent.

He said already the continent was suffering a deficit of over 60 percent and in bridging that gap there was the need for intensive economic cooperation among member countries.

"Africa is on the move and poised for economic growth and all that they need to achieve is commitment from their leaders in the continent,” he said.

He denounced the neglect by airlines and shipping lines, adding that such moves could further aggravate the situation of the people of those regions that were suffering from social trauma.

He commended President Mahama and the ECOWAS for taking measures that could stem the spread of the disease in other parts of the region.  --  GNA