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“Africa must prepare for 400 million new workforce before 2035”-CFA 

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The global President of the CFA Institute, Marg Franklin, has challenged African countries to prepare for its projected 400 million new workforce by empowering the current young ones with the right skills ahead of 2035.

Franklin stated this on Wednesday in Lagos at the CFA Institute Africa Investment Conference themed “The Emergence of Africa: A Rethink or A Restrategizing?”

Citing a World Bank projection that Africa would have more than 400 million new workforces by 2035, the CFA President said the continent has a lot of work to do before that time to bridge the current skills gaps among the young ones.

According to her, while the young population of Africa is an asset for the continent, there is a need to educate them and get them prepared for the work ahead.

  • “According to the World Bank, by 2035 more than 400 million young people in Africa will enter the workforce. These young people represent a world of opportunity.
  • However, there’s much work to do as it relates to filling skills gaps and educating the investment professionals of the future.
  • Professional credentials, ongoing continuing education programs, and gatherings such as this conference are the critical elements of a robust learning ecosystem that will better prepare the next generation of working professionals in Africa,” she said.

Financial education

Specifically, Franklin said the young African population will need to be well-educated financially before they enter the workforce.

This, she said would help the continent to build an army of financial professionals to drive its economy.

  • There are very few places I go where Africa doesn’t enter into the conversation. More than 1/3 of the people in Africa are aged 15 to 24 and by 2050 one of four people on the planet will be African.
  • This creates a unique condition in which young individuals will require financial education. And this is where financial professionals are expected to make a real impact on them.  
  • “There will be many individuals entering the workforce and considering finance as a career. And so, we need to ensure these individuals are well educated and well prepared to create strong robust capital markets that cater to the unique needs of this market,” she said.

Investment solutions for Africa

Speaking on the need to attract more investments to the continent, Franklin said Africa will need to develop solutions that apply to their markets and their people.

She noted that investments no longer come as easily as before, hence, more efforts must be put into ensuring that solutions coming out of the continent can guarantee returns on investments.

  • “We’re seeing the end of cheap money, higher inflation, increased market volatility, and more variable interest rates are creating headwinds for the industry at large.
  • We are going to have to work harder to create sustainable returns with appropriate risks of allocation,” she said.

Earlier in her welcome address, the President of CFA Society Nigeria, Ibukun Oyedeji noted that the conference marks a significant milestone in the collective pursuit of advancing investment opportunities that drive sustainable growth in Africa.

She noted that the conference has provided an opportunity for the African countries to unlock the immense potential that the continent holds, she added that such potentials as a Vibrant economy, rich resources, young and ambitious populations amongst other potentials.


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