The African Youth Network for Leadership and Development is marked to host the 3rd edition of MODEL ECOWAS SUMMIT in Accra from May 31st to 2nd June 2018, under the auspices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ghana.

The event will cover a three-day power packed youth empowerment activities among stakeholder discussions on issues to develop the potentials of the youths in utilizing opportunities and embark on a number of sustainable initiatives relevant within the West African sub-region and the continent at large.

About 300 delegates are to attend this 3rd edition of the summit from the 15 ECOWAS member states and other non- ECOWAS member states including Zimbabwe, Cameroon, Ethiopia, South Africa and other countries outside Africa. A diplomatic Cocktail Reception, an Economic Forum and the Model Summit will be the lineup of activities scheduled to take place at the Afrikiko Leisure Centre, Christ The King Hall and Accra International Conference Centre respectively.

The purpose of the summit is among others enhance the policy of transforming ECOWAS from ‘’ECOWAS of States to ‘’ ECOWAS of People as well as create an avenue where the youth of ECOWAS member states can convene and be empowered to achieve higher goals aimed at promoting economic development and job creation through entrepreneurship in the ECOWAS sub region. The theme for the summit is thus “A New West African Owned-Economy: Setting the agenda for new opportunities”.

The Executive Chairman of MODEL ECOWAS SUMMIT, Mr. David Osabutey stated that, as part of the activities marked for the summit, it will on the second day host the maiden edition of the West African Youth Economic Forum made up of: Entrepreneurship and Investment forum, Agribusiness forum, Technology and Innovation forum. Each forum will comprise of plenary session, Focus Group Sessions, Business-Business and Tech-Tech Session to help address issues affecting the youth in the areas of entrepreneurship, agriculture and technology and offer solutions to help the youth overcome the challenges. The forum as an initiative is expected to bring together young entrepreneurs, policymakers and investors to support the growth of new and existing enterprises in West Africa as well as offer opportunities for networking, entrepreneurial idea/experience sharing, create partnerships and building relationships.

Participants are expected to gain the following key transferable skills which will improve their problem solving and negotiating skills: Leadership potential/ability, diplomacy, team work and adaptable “Can do” attitude, analytical and conceptual skills, problem solving skills, Creativity/innovation, Strong communication skills (verbal and written), Strong interpersonal skills, Strategic thinking.

At the end of this high research based summit, all the delegates will conclude by popular votes in adopting a Final Communiqué; a single outcome document which will be submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Republic of Ghana, for onward consideration and submission to the ECOWAS Secretariat. The communiqué highlights the crucial roles ECOWAS member states, stakeholders, civil society and policy makers must play in creating sustainable economic opportunities for the people of the West African sub region, especially the youths.

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