Addis Ababa September 12/2017 Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Vera Songwe, pledged support to Chad as it seeks to transform its economy and lure international investors.
While conferring with President Idriss Déby at a round table discussion on the nation's development plan, Songwe said the dawn was near for Chad, if its leaders could maintain strict macroeconomic discipline which should engender growth, enforce good governance and advance economic integration.
"There's an old saying that goes it's darkest before the dawn. This phrase summarizes the situation in Chad today. As we have heard from many of the speakers, the macroeconomic situation in Chad is very difficult," she said.
“That must not stop the drive for economic transformation, it should accelerate it" she added.
She said a number of important governance problems persisted in Chad and externally the drop in oil prices and climate change has negatively impacted the country.
She praised Chad for its role in working for peace and security in the region, in particular being at the forefront of fighting terrorism and rebuffing Boko Haram.
"For that we thank Chad and we recognize its importance on the continent," she said, adding peace and security is an important and crucial step for development.
Growth has dropped from an average of 7.4 percent between 2003 and 2014 to about three percent in 2015 due to a number of difficulties that the Executive Secretary said are not insurmountable if Chad stayed the course.
"Vision 2030, the Chad we want seeks to bring hope and optimism to this challenging picture" she said. "For the plan to deliver the hope that we are looking for we need an accelerated implementation of the first phase of the plan, to instill credibility. Government must tackle difficult reforms"
The plan has a number of critical actions for a peaceful, unified Chad that is resilient and resolutely marching towards economic transformation and industrialization.
Songwe said ECA together with the African Development Bank and the African Union will help Chad to accomplish its goals under the tri-partite structure meant to help advance economic development as part of the African Union's Vision 2063.
Chad must do its part for the support of others to be effective. This includes working on domestic resource mobilization, increasing tax revenues, transparency, stemming illicit financial flows, economic integration, diversification and value addition will help Chad fund her development plan, she said.
She urged Chad to create an environment conducive and favorable for investors, adding agriculture is also key in particular if women are given access to land and financing.