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Technology Holds the Key to Realizing Africa’s Full Potential


Given the rate at which young populations in many African countries are expanding, the continent promises to emerge as a major consumption market in the coming decades. Over 75% of Africa’s current population is under the age of 35, and by 2030, 42% of the world’s young people are expected to reside in African nations. These statistics point to the potential for the continent to develop itself and contribute largely to innovative spaces and the world economy. However, for the continent to compete in world markets, technology will be critical to help this emerging population of leaders and doers reach their full potential and take their rightful place in the world.

Technology: The Pivot of Africa’s Future

Technology, particularly the ever-evolving digital ecosystem, has rapidly grown its web in recent decades and shows no signs of slowing. Successful leaders must not only embrace and adapt to new technologies, but also create more of them, and use them to solve pressing issues. In this swiftly changing world, Africa requires leaders who recognize what their communities need, anticipate their future needs, and possess the creativity to connect those needs with emerging technologies.

Technology is continuously becoming the driving force behind everything we do, from banking, purchasing, and investing, to socializing, enjoying entertainment, and networking. This steady advancement creates constant opportunities for growth and progress. More than 10% of the world’s internet users now reside in Africa, owing significantly to the massive influx of smartphone and tablet availability. This is paving the way for internet capability in rural areas that still often lack traditional computer resources.

Despite recent market reduction, Africa has cemented itself as a “mobile-first” continent. Over the past two decades, countries such as Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania have seen cell phone use skyrocket, increasing from one in ten people owning a cell phone to nine out of ten—ownership numbers comparable to those of Western nations.

Check out the complete article originally published at Africa Up Close.


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