By Andualem Sisay Gessesse – Busan, South Korea – Korea, which managed to become the world’s high-tech industries hub in a few decades, recommends strategies that enables Africa to fast-track its industrialization vision.
Addressing the opening of the 53rd African Development Bank annual meetings in Busan, Korea, the Deputy Prime Minister & Strategy and Finance Minister Dong Yeon Kim suggested to Africa the following fast track industrialization strategies based on his country’s experience:
- 1 –Innovative approach: involving unique approach and tailored strategies depending on each country’s situation; look for leapfrogging opportunities that focuses on the 4th Industrial Revolution – current and developing environment in which disruptive technologies and trends such as the Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, virtual reality (VR) and artificial intelligence (AI).
- 2 – Inclusive and people driven industrialization: it needs to be inclusive as inequality undermines the sustainability of the industries.
- 3 –Smart infrastructures: that Korea is currently implementing projects like, the 1st smart drone port in Rwanda and smart farm tech in Tanzania.
With some of the world’s best known electronic and vehicle brands such as Samsung, Li and Kia motors, among others, Korea is the 11th largest economy in the world whose citizen’s per capita is $26,000.
Speaking on the needs for demand based unique solution, he mentioned M-Pesa of Kenya as a successful an example that enabled the unbanked people in the rural area to be part of the financial system.
Recalling how Ethiopian soldiers who arrived in 1951 in the port of Busan [formerly Pusan] during the war with the North Korea, which took place between 1951-1953.
“This city has a special relationship with Africa. In 1951 during the Korean War the Imperial troops from Ethiopia called the Kagnew Battalion, arrived to Busan to join the United Nations forces to help us at a time South Korea has retreated all the way back to Busan. Our African allies including Ethiopia and South Africa helped the Korean development and get out of the ashes during the Korean War” he said.
“…I can now very proudly say that Busan has now developed to become the second largest city with one of the world’s biggest port,” he said.
African ministers responsible for economy, bank governors and international institutions heads such as World Bank president are attending the meeting opened today focusing on how Africa grows its manufacturing industries and improve the quality of its citizens like Korea, among others.
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