The Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) has received a resuscitation call by the Pan-African Business Forum (PABF), in a meeting in Accra, Ghana, with an express request to US President Barrack Obama to barricade this fund that his predecessor George W. Bush had initiated.
The business poke came from Prince Prosper Agbesi, PABF’s President, who mentioned that MCA has done a laudable job for the developed world and the continent, but it was time it got the upper hand over the rather customary yet equally effective trail blazer, African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).
Agbesi noted the shortcomings of MCA to create a worldwide compact of $2.4B, by only managing to amass $1.5B, to date, and thus the need for its renaissance.
AGOA is a text book story in the Pan-African spirit and may even sound cliché to most people today especially in its well known abbreviation.
Though it has existed for years, the Opportunity Act has every now and then received a boost from the West, after the United States government signed it into law, May 18, 2000.
The central purpose of the compact is to introduce new opportunities into Africa, while creating widespread liberalization of national economies in a free-market sense.
There has been much ado in creating stimulus in specific industries in Africa, South of the Sahara, including an outline of the Second Annual Report of 2008 which highlighted the basic elements impacting on trade in given industries.
There has also been momentous drive from various UN agencies like the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP), based in Gigiri, Nairobi, Kenya, which also regularly delineates factors impacting on funding renewable power sources in the low-income parts of the continent.
Thus, AGOA has been more of a customary and policy-oriented approach to the business breathing space of Africa.
It is for this reason that analysts like those in the Pan-African Business Forum in Ghana want the kaleidoscope of Western policy markets to light upon the Millennium Challenge Act, bearing on an infrastructural premise.
So far, infrastructure in Ghana has boomed, especially in IT and telecommunications. What remains is a more holistic funding of surface and air infrastructure, to enhance the power of a more distributive economy like that of this West African nation.