The UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) announced a collaboration with the African Business Coalition for Health (ABCHealth) on projects to strengthen Africa’s health sector.
According to the ECA release, the efforts include the Healthcare and Economic Growth in Africa (HEGA 2) study and the West Africa AfCFTA-anchored Pharma Initiative, which is a roadmap for the local manufacture of medications and medical equipment in the West African sub-region.
The HEGA 2 report is a follow-up to the HEGA 1, which examined a strategic path for African countries to better interact with the commercial health sector in order to expedite health advances.
The inaugural study, which analysed Africa’s healthcare difficulties and identified potential for the private sector, was released in February 2019 on the sidelines of the 32nd AU meeting in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa.
According to the ECA statement, the second edition intends to harness innovation and broaden the focus on creating resilient national health systems in the post-COVID-19 environment.
The West Africa AfCFTA-anchored Pharma Initiative aims to boost the supply side of the sub-health region’s sector by mobilising investment and resources to promote indigenous manufacturing of internationally recognised standards and quality.
Regarding the collaboration, ABCHealth co-founder Aliko Dangote stated, “With the coalition that ABCHealth is building across the continent, responsible business leaders and philanthropists will have a platform that enables them to make sustainable, large-scale investments in health that transform African economies and people.”
“Investing in health is not only a social benefit; it is also a strong business case. The AfCFTA-anchored Pharma Initiative provides attractive private sector investment and innovation possibilities that will improve lives, decrease poverty, and contribute to Africa’s inclusive and sustainable economic development,” said Vera Songwe, ECA Executive Secretary.
ABCHealth Chairman Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede expressed confidence in the partnership’s good influence on the continent’s health industry.
“It is our sincere opinion that with the public and private sectors working together, combining political will with business experience, Africa’s health sector can be expanded to the point where it can give cheap health to Africans in an equitable manner,” the chairman stated.
According to ECA, prior to the COVID-19 epidemic, economic prospects in Africa’s healthcare and wellness industry were anticipated to reach 259 billion US dollars by 2030, with the potential to create 16 million employment.
The pharmaceutical business alone was expected to be worth $60 billion in 2020, and it is continually expanding.