SDG9 on sustainable industry to be discussed on 16 November in Addis Ababa

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SDG9 on sustainable industry to be discussed on 16 November in Addis Ababa ©UNDP

After Mauritius in December 2022, where the cyclone season and territorial climate resilience were discussed, the African Economic Conference (AEC2023) returns to Addis Ababa, the world's third largest diplomatic hub, from 16 to 18 November 2023. On the agenda for discussion between economic players and political leaders is the thorny issue of sustainable industrialisation in Africa, including that of host Ethiopia.

With just a few weeks to go before the opening of the African Economic Conference (AEC2023) in Addis Ababa, the African Development Bank (AfDB), the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have a common wish for the event they are co-organising: to bring the continent’s investors together at the same table. The aim is to address the often overlooked issues of Sustainable Development Goal 9 (SDG9), which focuses on sustainable industrialisation.

The meeting from 16 to 18 November 2023 is being held against a backdrop of rising industrial pollution, accelerating deforestation in favour of fossil fuels (oil and gas) and food waste, which contrasts with food insecurity. All of this implicates the ecological responsibility of companies accused of depleting the planet’s resources. Participants at AEC2023 will therefore be discussing eco-responsible practices such as energy efficiency (solarisation of sites), carbon credits and the digitalisation of working techniques.

The contribution of multinationals to financing the mitigation of global warming is also likely to feature in the discussions as the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28) on climate change in Dubai approaches. It is time for Africa to “better explore private sector and public-private partnership (PPP) options for financing sustainable industrialisation, integrating into value chains and promoting the green economy”, says the Addis Ababa-based ECA.

Read also- Climate Chance: African non-state actors’ position for COP28 known

The choice of Ethiopia’s capital is not insignificant, as it is an economic powerhouse that owes its growth to the many technology firms (Safaricom) and mass retailers (Décathlon) that are already well established. This is also the case for Ethiopian Airlines, which was ranked as Africa’s number one airline in 2022 by the British agency Skytrax, just before completing its “first flight operated with sustainable aviation fuel” in April 2023. The aim of such an initiative, pleasing to environmentalists, is to help reduce the aviation industry’s CO2 emissions.

For more information on the event, click here.

Benoit-Ivan Wansi

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