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  • “If you are doing something that you really love, it is not work.”- Barclay Paul Okari
  • “What keeps you going [as an entrepreneur] is the need to see your idea come to fruition.”- Kwame Abrokwa
  • “African youth - there will not be the expected growth without your dreams. You need to create your job. In the DNA of Africans, the entrepreneurship gene is there.”- Karl Miville de Chene
  • “Let’s do everything to make sure youth are key stakeholders and are included.”- Michaëlle Jean
  • “Europe needs to do more in Africa so that African students can return to help their countries of origin.”- José Manuel Barroso
  • “The country cannot develop without you. Each of you has the opportunity to reach and accomplish your dreams. The continent of Africa is the continent of the future.”- H.E. Ali Bongo Ondimba
  • “Africa’s strong economic growth (5 percent) is thanks to its youth, which will be the main source of production and innovation in the coming years.”- Lionel Zinsou
  • “Talent does not exist everywhere. The only difference between countries is access. Without having access, nothing will happen.”- Garry Kasparov
  • “African women have arrived.”- Isabel dos Santos
  • “There’s a preconceived idea on Africa which is totally obsolete. Africa is now the future.”- Laurent Fabius
  • “Ambition is a key factor in transformation. The will to transform a country has to be accompanied by action”- Hafid Elalami
  • “All the research shows that investing in women is a good investment”- Cherie Blair
  • “The 21st century is the century of Africa.”- Vincente Fox
  • “This Forum is a perfect example of Gabon's engagement as a future-thinking country, searching for innovative solutions to the challenges facing Africa in its economic growth.”- Alassane Ouattara
  • “Africa is now open to all investors. Its leaders are willing to preserve the continent’s resources and willing to engage in a win-win partnership.”- Macky Sall
  • “Together, we want to encourage young women to venture into new frontiers, and learn that they can achieve anything.”- Sylvia Bongo Ondimba
  • “Technology is spurring innovation, and the so-called "demographic dividend" has brought change.”- Nouriel Roubini
  • “We Africans must do business with each other.”- President F.W. de Klerk
  • “We need to have a competitive economy and proper legal environment to create enterprise, which in turn creates jobs.”- Jean-Louis Billon
  • “We need peace for security but we also need justice and accountability.”- Fatou Bensouda
  • “Given technology in tough environments, people will do more with that technology than its engineers could have ever imagined.”- Jared Cohen
  • “You look at Africa the biggest impediment is our not being able to work together. It’s very simple.”- Kola Karim
  • “If you get the politics and the policies right, the economics usually follow.”- Lord Mandelson
  • “The G.D.P. of african countries has been rising swiftly, but we must take into account issues like access to water supply, education, healthcare, infrastructure and employment.”- Olusegun Obasanjo

PRESS RELEASE

CEMAC HEADS OF STATE ANNOUNCE TWO REGIONAL POLICY INITIATIVES AT THE G8 PRE-SUMMIT IN LONDON

Six African Presidents sign major policy commitments at Head of States summit in Gabon, held as part of The New York Forum AFRICA
- Visa free travel for CEMAC block by end of 2013
- New measures to support pharmaceutical industry

LIBREVILLE, June 15, 2013 – Two major policy announcements, signed by the six African heads of state of the Communauté Economique et Monetaire de l’Afrique Centrale (CEMAC) summit in Libreville, Gabon, were agreed yesterday. They will be presented to the leaders of the G8 in London today (June 15) by the Gabonese foreign secretary.

The policy initiatives are contained within a communiqué agreed by the CEMAC leaders at their summit, held in the margins of a grouping of more than 1,000 business and political leaders attending this year’s The New York Forum AFRICA (NYFA), the largest pan-African business summit in the world. The two major new policy commitments are:

- The abolition of visa requirements for all citizens of CEMAC for travel within the region, to be implemented by January 1, 2014.

- The creation of a policy framework for the protection of business in the CEMAC region, including the adoption of harmonised drug registration policies to combat counterfeit drugs, as well as facilitate access for pharmaceutical companies to the regional market. The communiqué will be presented at the G8 pre-summit event on Africa by H.E. Emmanuel Issoze- Ngondet, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and the Francophonie for the Republic of Gabon, on behalf of the collected governments of the CEMAC region. A final communiqué from the CEMAC leaders will be delivered upon the conclusion of the NYFA to the G8.

Announcing the policy commitments, H.E. Ali Bongo Ondimba, President of the Gabonese Republic and current chair of the CEMAC, said: “Our six nations are working together across borders to find regional solutions to some of our common challenges, and to strengthen our economic cooperation in order to spur development.

“As the eyes of the world fall on the G8 in the UK this week, the CEMAC leaders wanted to show their own commitment to boosting trade and investment in Africa.

“Together, we are striving to consolidate platforms for growth in Africa, through trade and economic cooperation, and to create new opportunities for the next generation to fulfill their potential. These new policy commitments are the results of fruitful talks at the CEMAC summit, and we look forward to maintaining the momentum in our discussions with the private sector at The New York Forum AFRICA over the next two days.”

CEMAC is an economic and monetary union whose membership consists of Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and the Republic of the Congo. It administers the Central African Franc through the Bank of the Central African States and, through its Regional Economic Programme, is focused on fostering development in the region by deepening regional integration, building a strong common market, and boosting and facilitating trade.

This year, in recognition of the G8 agenda’s direct relevance to African development, CEMAC aligned its own discussions with the key focus areas of the G8 – taxation, trade and transparency.

The six CEMAC heads of state joined other political leaders and more than 1,000 business leaders from the region and further afield to discuss issues as diverse as national and economic security, infrastructure, energy, and foreign direct investment, with a special focus on SMEs and entrepreneurs. The CEMAC Summit agenda was designed to agree clear policy frameworks in key areas that will help to increase trade volumes and further the region’s development:

- Clarifying and coordinating customs and trade rules in the region to allow free trade of goods across borders;
- Deepening regional integration by increasing freedom of movement of people within CEMAC;
- Connecting CEMAC’s cities and improving transit networks;
- Pursuing deeper and more productive trade links with the rest of the world through improving its external tariff profile and the development of the Economic Partnership Agreement negotiation with the EU.

Now in its second year, the New York Forum AFRICA is organised by Richard Attias & Associates under the patronage of the Office of President Ali Bongo Ondimba and in collaboration with the Government of Gabon.

The New York Forum AFRICA is a real pan-African laboratory of ideas, said founder Richard Attias, bringing together leaders from many areas of economic and political activity to find solutions for the ongoing development of Africa and to encourage foreign investment.

“At the NYFA, we will be proposing innovative solutions within the continent so its population can seize the opportunities presented, as well as create new opportunities for foreign corporations so they can build lasting business relationships with Africa,” he said.

Media enquiries:
Catherine Meddahi
c.meddahi@agence-influences.fr, mobile +33 6 23051416
Obakeng Mooke
Obakeng.mooke@fleishman.co.za, mobile +27 83 3073992

For more information about New York Forum AFRICA
Visit: http://www.ny-forum-africa.com

About the New York Forum
The New York Forum was conceived out of a conviction that the business world is at a crucial crossroads. It is imperative to send a strong message of optimism about the future of the global economy, work to redefine corporate governance, create long‐term value and reinvent business models by bringing together all stakeholders in the economy. Our aim is to focus on strengthening the link between economic growth and job creation, on the importance of cities as key components of dynamism and innovation, on the challenges head of companies have to address in a context of volatility and uncertainty, and on the opportunities offered by the growth of emerging economies . http://www.ny‐forum.com

About Richard Attias & Associates
Richard Attias & Associates is a strategic communications firm that provides private consultancy, idea initiatives and live experiences. Our mission is to help leaders, corporations and nations build their global influence, catalyze innovation and lead the global exchange of ideas. Using strategic and operational expertise, RAA creates interactive platforms, living laboratories of human capital, and historic cultural exchanges that help foster positive change for the global community.
Richard Attias is the world's top community builder for the "thinking elite". Over the last two decades, he has built a matchless reputation for helping nations, organizations and corporations catalyze the global exchange of ideas.
As a global influencer, Attias has developed some of the most influential gatherings of world leaders. He was the exclusive producer of the World Economic Forum, including the Davos Forum, for 15 years and co‐founder of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) and the Conference of Nobel Laureates.
With offices in New York, Paris, Doha, Rabat and Beijing, the RAA mission is a "call to action" to all global leaders, by creating borderless communities, and facilitating business opportunities for growth recovery through the New York Forum Institute, a not‐for‐profit Foundation.
Richard Attias &Associates has recently conceived various initiatives such like the New York Forum, the New York Forum AFRICA, Doha GOALS, the Global Food Security Forum, the New York Times Schools for Tomorrow, Energy for Tomorrow, and Dealbook conferences and the African development Bank Annual Meetings in Marrakech. Richard Attias and Associates will also organize the coming 2015 African Games in Brazzaville. http://www.richardattiasassociates.com

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