Young first visited the continent forty years ago for a meeting of the World Bank, and as luck would have it returned to the continent several times after, visiting the African-American Institute and traveling with Arthur Ashe to South Africa for a tennis match. As a result of these visits, Young saw an Africa that defied all he had initially expected, an emerging continent that could perhaps become a new symbol of prosperity for other developing continents and nations.
While this potential is apparent, Young does acknowledge that Africa has a ways to come in terms of eradicating hunger, disease, intertribal violence and terrorism toward civilians. Nonetheless, the benefits of a boosted economy, including multimillion-dollar investments from international businessmen and women and the introduction of multinational corporations, might allow the continent to find solutions to these issues within its own land. Countries like the United States, Young says, should pose the question, “Africa, how can we help you?” in order to help the continent unlock its vault of opportunity.
Andrew Young was honored at a leadership dinner hosted by President Clinton Monday night in Washington, D.C. for his efforts to promote Africa as an emerging global business center.
Check out Andrew Young’s piece here.