The sun was beating down on the tree-lined courtyard of one of Accra’s ritziest hotels – an edifice built with a loan from the World Bank’s commercial arm to a Saudi Arabian conglomerate to ‘promote’ Africa’s private sector.
Most of the food and drink it sells is imported, including mineral water from Italy and coffee from Colombia.
It’s an ideal location to discuss the contradictions in the continent’s economic trajectory.
One of the most original thinkers on Africa’s political economy, Hippolyte Fofack marches in, multiple phones buzzing. As chief economist at Afreximbank, he had spent the week hosting politicians, businesspeople and academics at a conference to mark the bank’s 30th anniversary.
There’s more to this story
Get unlimited access to our exclusive journalism and features today. Our award-winning team of correspondents and editors report from over 54 African countries, from Cape Town to Cairo, from Abidjan to Abuja to Addis Ababa. Africa. Unlocked.
Already a a subscriber