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Tony Elumelu rallies support for Africa’s private sector in Oxford, Paris and New York

By News Express on 25/05/2015

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African businessman and philanthropist Tony Elumelu has called on business leaders to make decisions that will increase economic and social wealth, and promote development in the communities and nations in which they operate. Mr. Elumelu, the Chairman of Heirs Holdings and the Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, made the call in a closing keynote speech titled ‘Africapitalism as a Catalyst for Development in Africa’ delivered at the Oxford Africa Conference, Oxford University last Friday, May 22.

Prof. Peter Tufano, the Dean of Oxford University’s Said Business School, introduced Tony Elumelu to a packed audience at Oxford. In his speech, Mr. Elumelu discussed what already-established businesses could do to advance Africa’s development through an economic philosophy he calls “Africapitalism” – which focuses on the private sector’s critical role in driving economic and social development across Africa.

“Africapitalism means we cannot leave the business of development up to our governments, donor countries and philanthropic organisations alone,” he said. “We in the African private sector must wake up, recognise and embrace our role in driving the economic growth and the social development of Africa, and we must act on that responsibility in tangible ways.”

The Oxford Africa Conference is a leading annual event organised by members of the Oxford Africa Society and the Oxford Africa Business Network of Saïd Business School, Oxford University. President John Mahama of Ghana delivered the opening keynote of this year’s conference in the morning.

Earlier in the week, Tony Elumelu also championed the cause of access to power at the Sustainable Energy For All (SE4ALL) Global Advisory Board meeting in New York. The board is co-chaired by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the World Bank President, Jim Yong Kim.

“Good governance is good for Africa,” Mr. Elumelu said. “Our continent is open for business. There are lots of opportunities and the return on investment is extremely high.”

Africa’s power deficit is huge and may not be cleared in the next couple of years, Elumelu said. “The power sector is therefore a goldmine for investors.”

Mr. Elumelu equally represented Africa’s private sector in France last Wednesday, May 20, during a global business dialogue on influencing the agenda for the 2015 Conference of the Parties (COP 21), the leading annual negotiating summit on climate issues. He was invited along with an exclusive group of 40 global business leaders, including Jack Ma, the Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group, Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, and Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla.

•Photo shows Tony Elumelu.

Source News Express

Posted 25/05/2015 11:59:32 AM

 

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