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Africa loses about $80b yearly from illicit financial flows – UNECA Chief

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Africa loses an estimated $80 billion in a year due to illicit financial flows, UNECA Executive Secretary Dr. Abdella Hamdook has said.Addressing the 31st ordinary session of the AU Executive Council in Addis Ababa on Friday, Hamdok who spoke on a range of issues said financial outflows from the continent have become an international agenda given the scale of the matter and negative impact of such flows on Africa’s development and governance.

“Even though the continent is taking tangible steps toward a coherent approach to curb illicit financial flows, the magnitude of the issue calls for much more to be done.”

He added that curtailing illicit financial flows is imperative for implementation of Agenda 2030 and 2063 of the continent.

Speaking on migration in Africa, Hamdok said intra-African migration has dominated migration flows of the continent, referring the ILO’s report saying there are an estimated 7.5 million West African migrants within West Africa compared to 1.2 million in North America and Europe combined.

He said of the total migrant population in Europe, less than 12 percent are from Africa.

According to the UNECA head, Africa therefore must place migration at the top of the policy agenda to promote well managed migration.

Hamdok said the population in African cities is forecast to increase twice as fast as the rest of the world, and over the next decade, according to UN Habitat, an additional 187 million Africans will live in cities.

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