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28 October 2015

Last week Kebour Ghenna attended the 23rd Annual Conference of the National Black Chamber of Commerce in Hollywood, Florida.

The theme "The Family Business" highlighted the unity of entrepreneurs and celebrated their legacies. NBCC Co-founder Kay DeBow remarked "This is the most comprehensive and informative business conference in the nation."
In his speech about PACCI and trade in Africa, Kebour Ghenna explained that six of the 10 fastest growing economies in the world are African. And yet he said African American chose to look the other way. He shared his concerns about African American businessmen and women missing the party. He said the race is now on to make sure NBCC members and Americans in general have a place at the table before all the major seats are taken.
Kebour said that Africans and black Americans have still to forge serious relationships in business, he insisted that ‘Whether we like it or not, Africans and African-Americans have to come together and claim what is rightfully theirs: our joint power. His advice to black businessmen is to come down to the continent and do business. “Right now Manufacturing’s share of GDP in sub-Saharan Africa has held at around 10-12% in recent years. Industrial output, in what is now the world’s fastest-growing continent, is expanding as quickly as the rest of the economy. The evidence, big and small, is everywhere.”
Take note he said, that basically everything is imported. We need things produced locally. Today there is huge opportunity in setting up local businesses in Africa, to make and produce locally manufactured products or investing in existing smaller companies and helping them scale up and grow faster.
Last year Valerie Jarett, senior White House Advisor, recognized that “there is much synergy between Africa and African American business because the region is growing in precisely the areas where African American firms are competitive. In 2013 African American firms grossed more than $21.8 billion in the industrial services sector in the U.S., a two-billion dollar increase. The industrial services sector is Africa is the fastest growing in the world.”
African Americans largely continue to focus on the U.S. market at a time when economic growth in Africa has outpaced economic growth in the U.S. African American firms have been strong in technology, yet they missed the onset of Africa’s telecommunications revolution. Africa has three mobile phones for every four people, and the growth rate of Internet penetration over the past 10 years was more than 2,500% compared with a world average of less than 500%
For sure, African American and Africans cannot afford to look past each other. The future of all black-skinned people centers in Africa. “That is our birthright and today someone else has it.” Concluded Kebour.
The NBCC is the largest Black business association in the world with chapters, direct members and corporate partners in six continents.

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The Pan African Chamber of Commerce and Industry was established in 2009 by 35 founding national business chambers to influence government policy and create a better operating environment for business.

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