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Short summary of The Convergence of Nations


Africa has a perpetually rosy future. Its potential is tantalising, inspirational, world-changing – and naggingly difficult to turn into reality. Yet Africa’s time is at last arriving, a result of political and economic changes around the globe, as well as across this sprawling, fascinating, exasperating continent. Its population is young, dynamic and increasingly well-educated. African citizens are returning from developed countries, eager to spur progress and prosperity at home. The result is higher self-confidence, more openness and democracy, better-run governments and improved economies.

Jean-Claude Bastos de Morais, an Angolan-Swiss investor and entrepreneur, and a team of 31 authors from 15 nations have assembled a lively and wide-ranging account of Africa’s kaleidoscopic reality. Whether in energy, agriculture, capital markets and mining, or in new forms of manufacturing, internet technology, pop music, fashion and mobile payments, Africa offers the world important success stories.

In this most heterogeneous and fragmented of continents, there is no single narrative and no shortage of examples of poverty, disease, conflict and ill-dealing; terrorism and the turbulent aftermath of the Arab Spring have left their mark. Yet Africa presents an overall message of hope, encouragement and ambition.

The Convergence of Nations displays Africa in all its facets. It sets down new precepts for ‘African capitalism’: open to global investment, establishing its own economic practices based on best international ideas, and generating inclusive growth that genuinely benefits African societies.

Dazzling in its scope, gripping in its grasp of detail, this book sets down precepts for extending renewable energy, curbing Ebola, modernising plantations, fighting wildlife poachers and building industrial parks. It delves into lives of private equity entrepreneurs and unnecessary deaths of low-paid workers deprived of health services. The Convergence of Nations extends to culture, the arts and creative industries, describing the fluctuating styles of Accra and South African House music, the diverse faces of Kenyan fashion, and the flamboyance of Nigeria’s Nollywood films.

Here is a book about Africa, for Africa, by Africans – of value for anyone looking for a guide to the world’s future.