A new initiative by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) is supporting African cities to measure their Gross Domestic Product (GDP, a vital economic well-being indicator.
This is contained in a statement on Thursday.
The GDP estimates, the ECA said, will enable a more accurate understanding of the economic weight and performance of cities as well as the design of tailored measures to unlock their full potential.
Presenting the initiative to the inaugural meeting of a regional technical working group, Ms Edlam Yemeru, ECA’s Director a.i. for the Gender, Poverty and Social Policy Division said: “City GDP, inspite of its immense contribution to national economies, has hardly been measured in Africa consistently to inform policy targeting and investment decisions.
”Working with partners, ECA aims to ensure city GDP estimations are conducted regularly across the region as a means of accessing and harnessing the economic potential and performance of African cities.
This would be done while exchanging ideas, solutions and findings at the local, national and continental levels.
According to the statement, findings from the pilot initiative for the first time showed that between 2015 and 2020 Harare accounted for an average of 38 per cent of Zimbabwe’s GDP, while Accra and Yaoundé’s contributions in Ghana and Cameroon were 36 per cent and 15.7 per cent respectively.
The regional technical working group comprises experts from various organisations.
They are the UN-Habitat, the African Union, the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG-Africa), the Sahel and West Africa Club of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Others are the United Nations Capital Development Fund, the World Resources Institute, the Cities Alliance, the Gauteng City-Region Observatory and the Islamic Development Bank. (NAN)