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9 May, 2014

Call to Action Signed to Usher in Freer Travel & Talent Mobility in Africa

Abuja, Nigeria, 8 May 2014 (World Economic Forum media release) – The Global Agenda Councils on New Models for Travel & Tourism and Africa have today agreed to collaborate on promoting a regional integration strategy through the facilitation of travel and talent mobility in the region using, among others, a common visa for regional blocs across the African continent.

The strategy will enable national, regional and international travellers and students to travel more freely and in a more secure way. The Councils were represented by Donald Kaberuka from the African Development Bank and Kathleen Matthews from Marriott International.

The Call to Action on Travel Facilitation & Talent Mobility – signed by President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and Prime Minister Moussa Mara of Mali– recognizes the importance of travel facilitation and talent mobility as drivers to integrate and develop the region.

The call to action urges all African States to work together towards the establishment of joint policies and the removal of barriers to facilitate the movement of business travellers, students and tourists with the objective of  improving social and economic development on the continent.

“We are pleased that the Letter of Intent on Travel Facilitation & Talent Mobility was signed today,” said Thea Chiesa, Director, Head of the Aviation and Travel Industry at the World Economic Forum. “Facilitating travel to stimulate economic growth and job creation relates strongly to the theme of this year’s World Economic Forum on Africa.” She added that it is also a core activity of the Forum’s Industry Partners and Members of the Global Agenda Council on Africa and the Global Agenda Council on New Models for Travel & Tourism.

The 24th World Economic Forum on Africa was held in Abuja, Nigeria, on 7-9 May 2014. The theme of the meeting was Forging Inclusive Growth, Creating Jobs.

The Co-Chairs of the meeting are Dominic Barton, Managing Director, McKinsey & Company, United Kingdom; Jean-François van Boxmeer, Chairman of the Executive Board and Chief Executive Officer, Heineken, Netherlands; Aliko Dangote, President and Chief Executive Officer, Dangote Group, Nigeria; Bineta Diop, President, Femmes Africa Solidarité, Switzerland; Jabu A. Mabuza, Chairman, Telkom Group, South Africa; Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, Bharti Enterprises, India; John Rice, Vice-Chairman, GE, Hong Kong SAR