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Spotlight shines on Africa at Crans Montana Forum

The annual Crans Montana Forum wrapped up with a plenary session devoted to Africa

(Keystone)

Leaders from over 100 countries gathered at the annual Crans Montana Forum in Switzerland have come to an agreement that Africa should play a greater role in globalisation and world trade.

Africa's integration in the global economy is essential if the continent wishes to reap the benefits of globalisation, said T. Sakho, African bureau director at the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation on Sunday.

In an address on the last day of the conference in the Swiss Alps, Sakho pointed out that while sub-Saharan Africa is home to 10.7 per cent of the world's population, it represents only 2.4 per cent of the world's gross domestic product.

The prime minister of Chad, Nagoum Yamassoum, said that African states had to cooperate more closely in order to participate more in the process of globalisation.

On Friday, the Swiss economics minister, Pascal Couchepin, presided over a similar session devoted to the effects of globalisation. He said that some countries were too poor to play an effective role in world markets.

The Swiss foreign minister, Joseph Deiss, led the proceedings on Saturday, when the task of promoting democracy and security in the Balkan states was the focus of talks.

Deiss spoke of the difficult task facing the international community in promoting stability in the troubled region.

The three-day forum, which ended on Sunday, was attended by representatives of more than 100 countries.

swissinfo with agencies


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