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Africa's creative industries could contribute to poverty reduction

26 November 2014, 10:48

Nairobi - The World Bank on Tuesday said Africa's creative industries and cultural revival could contribute to economic growth and poverty reduction.

World Bank Kenya Country Director Diarietou Gaye told a cultural forum in Nairobi that the potential of the sectors is immense but remains largely untapped.

"Africa needs to be in tune with the modern world by being more innovative in the way to market its culture by embracing new technologies," Gaye said during the National Stakeholders Conference on the Development of Cultural Industries and the Arts. The two day event brought over 100 participants to promote culture and arts in Kenya.

She said Africa needs to be integrated with the rest of the world, so that it benefits from globalization. "What defines Africans and makes it unique is a set of cultural values that the continent is ready to share with the global community."

According to Gaye, Africa has a history of rich culture and arts, perhaps more than any other continent. "It springs from centuries of life, civilization and interaction between communities," she said, noting that the diversity of African culture and arts is as diverse as the African peoples themselves with many tribes and clans across all regions.

Also read: World Bank: Reforms could make Kenya manufacturing hub

"African music, cuisine, clothing, languages, traditions, believes and religion are all part of this rich diversity," the country director said.

She said that until the 20th century, African culture and art was seen in the western world as primitive but is now popular and in great demand.

"The continent needs to celebrate how far it has come in popularizing its culture and arts, which includes the renewal of African music to the ancient bronze figures and masks of Mali," she said.

The World Bank official noted that there is a whole range of activities that take place each year across Africa which highlight the continent's cultural diversities.

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- Xinhua


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