West Africans met Sunday in the Nigerian capital of Abuja for an international conference titled, “Business and Politics of Zambia’s Economy.” It drew 300 delegates — both from Africa and beyond — from Western and Eastern Europe, Asia, and the U.S. Their mission: to study — and learn from — the country’s reforms, political upheavals, and economic successes. Zambia’s national economy, launched in 1993, since expanded to encompass the telecommunications, agriculture, mining, mining and oil industries. And its innovation.
Unsurprisingly, the country attracted some well-known speakers.
Lisa Channing, COO of Silicon Valley-based Takara Telecoms, who studies African investment, made a speech about entrepreneurship. “The frontier of tech and innovation goes all the way up to the world’s second biggest economy,” she said. And he noted that a high African population growth rate is great for demand for new technology. (For a more detailed summation, watch Channing on “PBS NewsHour” in August, in which she says, “It’s vital that Africa takes on a major role in addressing the exploding internet needs of its citizens.”)