SEATTLE — United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) proclaims the decade 2016-2025 as Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa (IDDA III) in an effort to continue sustainable industrial development across the continent.
The U.N. General Assembly adopted the resolution on July 25 without a vote, after two previous industrial development decades saw promising growth. The African Union (AU), the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, Economic Commission for Africa and UNIDO will lead the program’s development and implementation.
Citing the need for “urgent action to advance sustainable industrialization as a key element of furthering economic diversification and value addition,” the IDDA III resolution aims to continue creating jobs, reducing poverty and furthering the progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
IDDA III’s success depends on additional resources and enhanced international cooperation. Accordingly, the resolution calls upon UNIDO to increase its technical assistance and foster strategic partnerships with other U.N. bodies. The Assembly also emphasized the importance of Africa’s own involvement in its economic and social development.
The resolution, first proposed at a meeting in New York last September, builds upon the first and second IDDA during the 80s and 90s, respectively.
Adopted in December of 1980, IDDA I followed a preceding resolution for a “new international economic order” by encouraging sustainable industrial development in Africa. IDDA I emphasized the involvement of the Economic Commission of Africa and Organization for African Unity as critical entities in its success.
Highlighting development of human resources and industrial production, IDDA I sought liberalized-world trade and increased-market access in favor of African countries. In addition, the resolution requested resources and technology transfers from industrialized nations, emphasizing international cooperation and support.
In December of 1989, the U.N. welcomed the years 1991-2000 as IDDA II This resolution reiterated the goals of IDDA I and further mobilized the international community through proclaiming Nov. 20 as Africa Industrialization Day.
With many of today’s fastest growing economies, including Rwanda and Ethiopia, Africa has seen ground-breaking growth up to this Third Industrial Development Decade.
UNIDO Director General, LI Yong, emphasizes the importance of continued progress towards sustainable industrialization. He stated, “I want to reiterate the validity of the dream of a flourishing continent, in which all its extraordinary resources, both natural and human, can finally be harnessed effectively to generate lasting prosperity for all.”
– Anna O’Toole