Harare – Africa is losing an estimated $60bn annually due to illicit financial outflows mainly of minerals and there is a need to implement strategic policies to curb the leakages, a senior United Nations official said on Wednesday.
The UN Economic Commission for Africa adviser, Dr Vanessa Ushie, revealed this in an interview with the Chronicle on the sidelines of the Zimbabwe Alternative Mining Indaba in Bulawayo.
She said the continent was failing to secure maximum benefits from its vast natural resources due to illicit financial outflows particularly in the mining sector.
“This is due to revenue losses and leakages,” Ushie said.
Zimbabwe has not been spared from the leakages with President Robert Mugabe saying the country has lost billions of dollars of diamond revenue from Manicaland mining fields in the past few years.
Ushie said African countries had to be more strategic in the way they managed their resources, especially minerals, to promote sustainable development.
“I think they are signs of progress towards addressing the challenges of illicit financial outflows and the fact that this type of space [ the Zimbabwe Alternative Mining Indaba] is in existence and we have seen 11 countries from Southern Africa now hold the alternative mining indaba, shows Africa’s commitment to managing its resources,” she said.