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Article by Arthur Bayhan, member of TCI Board of Directors Globalisation is a reality that countries in the Middle East can no longer escape and competitiveness is the only way to benefit from globalization and not become its victim.
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. 14-16 April 2008 Two hundred participants from more than 30 countries will meet at the first Pan African Competitiveness Forum (PACF) in Addis Ababa. PACF will be launched as a new continent-wide competence and action center on innovation and cluster based competitiveness initiatives in Africa. PACF will support stakeholders from business, knowledge institutions and government to respond more effectively to the unique challenges and opportunities that Africa is facing in the global competition. The conference is organized by the African Union (AU), the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and TCI-The Competitiveness Institute See Press Release
21 December 2007, USA Washington -- There is a joke in Silicon Valley, California, that says, "If two people from different high-tech companies go out to lunch together, by the time they're eating dessert, a third company has been formed".
As part of the celebration of the Carl Linnaeus 300 year anniversary The Competitiveness Institute - TCI has been co-organizer of the Pan-African Innovation and Cluster Competitiveness Symposium in Cape Town, September 17-18. The aim was to enhance the efficiency of social economic activities financed by aid organizations, with business on commercial conditions. At the symposium representatives from 10 African countries as well as the African Union attended and discussed actions needed encourage new initiatives on cluster initiatives for poverty reduction and regional developments.
On April 25, competitiveness stakeholders in Ethiopia, Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda convened with representatives from AU, UNIDO, USAID and JICA at a TCI organized forum in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The purpose was to, after having presented the achievements of a number of cluster-based competitiveness initiatives in Africa, discuss further development of the Pan Africa Competitiveness Forum (PACF) as an instrument for accelerated industrialization, value addition in production and increased trade competitiveness in Africa.
A feasibility study - sponsored by SPEED Ghana (GTZ/Danida) carried out by Innogate Inc (Thomas Winther, TCI Commissioner West Africa) in collaboration with The Danida Centre, University of Ghana Business School recommends that innovation and competitiveness is encouraged through active facilitation in the following three emerging clusters in Ghana:
At the Annual Conference in Lyon 2006, cluster practitioners and other stakeholders from business, academia, government and development partners in 8 African countries took the first steps towards "The Pan-African Competitiveness Forum", a collaborative platform for exchange of experiences and mutual learning on cluster initiatives. With the mission to improve living standards and local competitiveness of regions across the world by further development of national and regional cluster initiatives, TCI is committed to work for the implementation of the following agenda during the period of 2007-09.
Initial list of Members of the Pan-African Competitiveness Forum:
On 7 December 2006 19 stakeholders representing business, knowledge institutions and government met at The Ministry of Trade, Industry, Private Sector and President's Special Initiative for the 3rd Stakeholder Seminar of partnerships4competitiveness.
Report from session H4: At the 9th Annual Conference of The Competitiveness Institute stakeholders involved in cluster-based competitiveness initiatives in Africa participated in a session to address the following questions:
Increasingly African stakeholders from business, academia and government emphasize the role of a competitive private sector as key in growth and poverty relief initiatives. This priority is largely supported by development partners from within and outside Africa.
TCI Oceania (TCI-O) has been launched officially during the regional conference. TCI-O will not be a separate entity from TCI, but will rather help to address and enlarge the network of TCI in the Oceania region.
On 22 March 2006 21 stakeholders representing business, knowledge institutions and government met at University of Ghana Business School to discuss new potentials and possibilities for increasing the competitiveness of, and value added production in, Ghanaian industries and businesses.
"Pakistan sits astride the old silk route and has long been a significant economic player in the region. The Conference on Competitiveness for Asia and Pacific in Islamabad in May 2006 will address and identify the competitiveness potential of the leading economies in this region. It will mark also Pakistan's determination to improve its competitiveness both regionally and globally," says Arthur Bayhan, Acting Vice President Asia-Pacific in TCI and working in Islamabad.
Clusters Asia-Pacific (CAP) Inc. have changed name and description to 'The Competitiveness Institute Oceania - The TCI chapter network for regional competitiveness in the Oceania region'.
At The Competitiveness Institute's eighth Annual Global Conference in Hong Kong the Pakistan Minister of State for Finance, Omar Ayub Khan, in his keynote address announced that the Government of Pakistan has undertaken major initiative towards improving the competitiveness of its economy by establishing a Competitiveness Support Fund and projecting the creation of an a national Innovation and Competitiveness Council. The Council will use the Competitiveness Support Fund, financed by the Government of Pakistan together with United States Agency for International Development USAID, as a platform to upgrade the Pakistani industry. The fund is tailored to meet Pakistan's needs and based on international best practices of successful existing funds operating in countries like India, Thailand, Turkey, Ireland and Finland.
The Thai ministry of Industry and the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) recently announced a collaboration to enforce three clusters of SMEs.
The government of Kazakhstan is executing a new economic development policy concentrated on using the proceeds of their oil and gas riches to diversify their economy.
Information on last month's conference by the Centre for Regional Innovation and Competitiveness (CRIC) on "Beyond clusters: current practices & future strategies", held in Ballarat, Australia, in cooperation with TCI, is now available.
New York's Center of Excellence program and other high-tech initiatives are helping to finance the expansion of the biotechnology company OSI Pharmaceutical on Long Island.