Youth to drive economic prosperity – report

SHARE   |   Sunday, 02 November 2014   |   By Kabelo Adamson

The Barclays Africa Prosper Report launched this week has identified that Africa’s youth are set to become the drivers of economic prosperity provided they are given the right tools.

The campaign launched earlier this week titled Barclays Africa Prosperity Report to determine what the word ‘prosper’ means to the Africans was conducted in 11 countries including Botswana, South Africa, Kenya, Ghana and Seychelles.

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Presenting the report to members of the media this week, Barclays Bank of Botswana Head of Marketing and Communications, Rachael Mushaike, said 78 percent of the respondents were between 18 and 35 years of age, representing a significant portion of the ‘youth bulge’ being the future drivers of the African economy.

According to the results of the survey covering over 7000 people, most of Africa inhabitants understand prosperity as to having financial freedom with enough wealth to survive.

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The Prosper report suggests that for Batswana, financial barrier is the most challenge they face. Of the total 7042 interviewed respondents in the 11 African countries, 549 were Batswana which represents eight percent of the total respondents.

Mushaike said 59 percent of the locals interviewed said they would consult a financial institution to obtain financial prosperity while only six percent said they would consult a family member.

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Additionally the report submits that Batswana would like to invest as it is said that if given US$100 to help them prosper, 42 percent of the respondents said they would invest it while 30 percent would buy books while 19 percent of those who took part in the survey said they would buy themselves computers.

Lack of finances is a major barrier to prosperity as 64 percent of the participants allude to that with 33 percent of those saying this is also the easiest aspect of life to change.

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Managing Director of Barclays Bank Botswana, Reinette van der Merwe, said the Barclays Africa Report shows that people work hard for their money and want their money to work hard for them.

“What is particularly encouraging is that when questioned further, the youth of Africa would invest their money to fund further education than to spend it on flashy consumer goods,” she said.

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She said Africans view investment, education and savings as the main drivers of prosperity to open doors to economic growth. It is reported that Africa’s emerging youth presents the continent with an unprecedented opportunity to deepen the continent’s human capital.

Professor Monde Makiwane of the Human Resource Sciences Research Capital (HSRC) - providing an independent analysis of the research - observed that the report captures the prosperity perspectives, experiences and life strategies in Africa’s growing young emerging middle class who hold the key to the growing economic transformation in Africa.



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