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Daily Brief: 20 July 2016

Good morning

  • I hope everybody enjoyed themselves at last night's fashion show, which highlighted Africa's and Kenya's, in particular, extraordinary creative talent. Trade is the mechanism by which we convert this talent into jobs and prosperity for many more people in Kenya.

  • I have three events today that I want to highlight to you the press today.

  • First, from 3pm to 4.30pm, in Tsavo 2, you can attend the event called: "Looking beyond emergencies: Creating opportunities in migrant sourcing and transiting countries." With migrants travelling across the Mediterranean in ever increasing numbers, the question is not how to put the plaster on, but how to stop the bleeding. African people need jobs, and we believe that - if managed wisely - trade provides the means to generate those jobs. So this will be a discussion on migration issues, and in particular, how to change the conditions at home so that less people feel the need to undertake the dangerous journey to Europe.

  • Second, from 6pm to 7pm, UNCTAD will host an event in Tsavo 3, entitled: "Illicit trade: A new global partnership to tackle a rising threat." Illicit trade in counterfeit medicines, narcotics, cigarettes, and wildlife products - and increasingly in agricultural and manufactured goods - has exploded over the last two decades, sapping government revenues, destroying jobs, and endangering consumers. This issue affects Africa more than any other region in the world. And this side event will look at ways to discuss this problem in an holistic manner and from a development perspective.

  • Third, at 7pm in Where? The amphitheatre?, UNCTAD, the FAO, and UNEP will together outline a roadmap to end harmful fisheries subsidies. Worth about $20 billion per year, harmful fisheries subsidies means those subsidies which contribute to over-fishing or illegal fishing. This important issue directly contributes to the depletion of our global fishstocks. And ending subsidies in this sense has become a race against time. The issue has new momentum with the introduction of Sustainable Development Goal 14 to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, sea, and marine resources. Target 14.6 addresses the harmful subsidies directly.

  • Tomorrow, Thursday, you journalists will have plenty of interesting events to choose from.

  • First, starting at 9am and running until 2pm, in Tsavo 3, the Global Services Forum will begin. I want to tell you that the services sector has been the fastest growing creator of jobs in developing countries since the turn of the century. Many developing countries are tapping into this opportunity, exploiting their competitive advantages, for example, through the outsourcing of technology-enabled business services such as call centres or tourism. In fact, in African countries, services now account for an average 50 percent of GDP. But not enough countries are benefitting. This forum will look at how to reach more people and create more jobs in developing countries with this sector.

  • Then, second, at 1pm in the Amphitheatre, UNCTAD will launch this year's Economic Development in Africa Report, which will look at financing of the sustainable development goals. Last year, in 2015, the global community mandated UNCTAD and four other organisations - via the Addis Ababa Action Agenda - with the task of identifying solutions for financing the SDGs. The other four organizations are the World Bank, the IMF, the WTO, and the UNDP. I'd urge you all to find out about this report. Many African countries are feeling the consequences of falling commodity prices. As a result some governments are increasing their debt and this is giving economists some cause for alarm.

  • But please you don't have to be disappointed that there is a clash between this daily briefing and the Economic Development in Africa Report, because we will combine the two events. So you will see us there.

Thank you

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