The Africa Training Institute which will cater for training purposes in the Sub Saharan Africa region will mainly provide training for officials who are involved in the formulation and implementation of macro-economic and financial policies in that part of Africa.
In his address, the Vice-Prime Minister recalled that Sub-Saharan Africa region shall over time develop a network of policymakers and economic operators that will enable the region to have a collective and shared vision of development of the African continent.
The fact that Sub-Saharan Africa is moving at a fast pace we have to ensure shared prosperity of the citizens of the region by sustaining growth, he said. To achieve this, he said that African countries need to improve their economic management and foster greater integration by lowering barriers to the free movement of goods, services, people and capital.
VPM Duval outlined the rationale behind the setting up of the Institute which, he said is in line with the Government’s strategy to transform Mauritius as a service and knowledge centre, acting as a hub between Asia and Africa as well as with the rest of the world. He further stressed on Government strategy to develop its education and knowledge services as a result of the strong political commitment which the country has demonstrated by hosting regional agencies such as, AFRITAC South, the Regional Multidisciplinary Centre of Excellence, the COMESA Infrastructure Fund, amongst others.
Mr Duval invited other donors and development agencies to come forward and help expand the training programmes to be offered by ATI. According to him, investment in knowledge is a useful form of development aid.
For her part, Mrs Christine Lagarde commended Mauritius for the various initiatives taken to sustain its economy despite adverse effects of the global economic crisis. The Government has received plaudits from the IMF with regard to the strategies that have helped the country to diversify its economy and build resilience.
Upon becoming operational, ATI will be an addition to the network of training centres located in Austria, Kuwait and Singapore and the training programmes being offered in Brazil, China and India.
Mauritius and the IMF have, over the last two years, jointly run eight courses that have benefitted over 200 participants from Africa.