Avatar photo

Greg Dorey


Part of UK in Ethiopia

22nd July 2013

G8: what does it mean for Africa?

My Embassy hosted a panel discussion under the theme ‘G8: Tax, Trade, Transparency – What does it mean for Africa?’ last week. The Department for International Development’s Chief Economist Stefan Dercon was among the panellists and shared his views on the so-called “3T’s”, which have proved relevant not only to G8 countries but worldwide.


Prominent speakers from UN Economic Commission for Africa, African Union, African Development Bank and Ernst and Young Ethiopia were also on the panel and confirmed that the G8 priorities had great resonance in Africa too.

Lively discussions took place about the G8 needing to make sure that promises are kept and the need for Africa as well as the G8 to put its own house in order. It was agreed by all that Africa needs to make trade easier; improve the business environment; and realise more domestic resources.

The 3T’s make up an ambitious agenda -but it is also a practical and achievable agenda. It has the potential to transform international relationship with African countries from a focus on aid to a stronger partnership that can be mutually beneficial. As Stefan Dercon commented: ‘the G8 aims to make the world open for business, and business open for the world.’

Tax emerged as a key issue. Several panellists called for a greater focus on African countries raising their own revenues to use for infrastructure development, among other things. They argued that ensuring proper tax collection would lead to increase accountability of governments to their people. Participants also referred to the memorable but highly alarming statistic that illicit flows out of Africa amount to double the inflows of aid.

The discussion was an important element of our consultations with partners, following the recent Summit held under our G8 Presidency. We are determined to ensure that the words agreed at the Summit are translated into action – and that implementation of the 3 T’s continues well beyond our G8 Presidency.