The Commissioner for Trade and Industry of the African Union Commission (AUC) had a press briefing today on the margins of the 26th African Union Summit of Heads of State and Government, under the theme: “The African Union’s Trade and Industry Agenda as a catalyst for Africa’s Development”.H.E. Mrs. Fatima Haram Acyl highlighted the Department of Trade and Industry’s initiatives within the context of the Agenda 2063 and expressed the urgent need for Africa to industrialize.According to the Commissioner for Trade and Industry, Africa faces an imperative for structural transformation. H.E. Mrs Fatima Haram Acyl observed that we need to address the paradox of a rich continent with poor citizens. Therefore urgent steps must be taken to create sustainable jobs that will improve the well-being of the people of Africa, especially women and youth.The Commissioner for Trade and Industry also pointed out that African Union’s trade and Industry agenda is looking to support the continent’s structural transformation agenda, in line with Agenda 2063 and underscored that the fall of the commodities prices have reinforced the imperative of diversifying away from commodities based economies. “I want to highlight two critical initiatives that are central to ensuring that the AU’s trade and Industry agenda will play a catalytic role in the continent’s transformation agenda. These are initiatives related to the Africa Mining Vision as well as the Boosting Intra African Trade and fast tracking the Continental Free Trade Area”, she said. Commissioner Acyl mentioned that the Africa Mining Vision provides a framework for providing technical assistance currently provided through the 5 year African Minerals Development Center (AMDC) project involving AUC, UNECA, AfDB, UNDP and other partners in a manner that ensures ownership by African governments of these interventions.