Africa and COVID-19 Webinar Series: COVID-19 and the African Economy


Wednesday, June 3, 2020, 10:00am to 11:00am


Virtual Event - Details Below

June 3 – COVID-19 and the African Economy

June 3 Panelist Poster

This week's panel will explore the impact of COVID-19 on the African economy including the fiscal space, debt sustainability, remittances, and the continent’s economic relationship with China.

How should African governments be thinking about the economy in the context of the pandemic? What kind of assistance does Africa need from the international community financially, and how do African governments position themselves through policies (fiscal, monetary, economic) for a strong comeback once the pandemic resides? Is this an opportunity to rethink African supply and value chains in an era of enforced self-reliance?


Register for the webinar here:


This webinar will be livestreamed on Facebook:


Confirmed Speakers:

  • Akim Daouda - CEO, Gabonese Sovereign Wealth Fund - Gabon
  • Hippolyte FofackChief Economist at the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) - Cairo, Egypt
  • Hon. Ken Ofori-Atta - Finance Minister, Republic of Ghana
  • Amandla Ooko-Ombaka -  Associate Partner, McKinsey & Company - Kenya
  • Moderated by Dani Rodrick - Ford Foundation Professor of International Political Economy at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government

More about the speakers:


Akim Daouda is the Chief Executive Officer of the Sovereign Wealth Fund of the Gabonese Republic. He works closely with government leaders and ministries, as well as private sector champions on issues related to economic development, industrial growth, and transformation. He is ranked among Young African Business Leaders under the age of 40 who are expected to play a major and transformative role in the continent's economic development.

Dr. Hippolyte Fofack is the Chief Economist and Director of Research and International Cooperation Department at the African Export-Import Bank. He directs theoretical and applied economic research activities and advises the President and Executive Vice Presidents on matters relating to research, policy development, and strategic directions. Prior to joining the African Export-Import Bank, he was with the World Bank Group, where he served in several capacities, including as Senior Economist and Cluster Leader and Head of the Macroeconomic and Growth Program at the World Bank Institute.

Honorable Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, is a Ghanaian economist, investment banker, and politician as well as the co-founder of Databank Group, a Ghanaian investment firm. He has served the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning for the government of Ghana since 2017. He brings over 30 years’ experience in Ghanaian and international financial sector to the ministry.

Amandla Ooko-Ombaka is an economist and Associate Partner at McKinsey focused on agriculture and food. She works across Africa and globally with governments to develop their agriculture sectors, and with private sector agricultural input and food companies to better serve their farmers and consumers. She is a Leadership Council member at the Harvard Center for African Studies.

Professor Dani Rodrik is the Ford Foundation Professor of International Political Economy at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government. Professor Rodrik is an economist whose research covers globalization, economic growth and development, and political economy. His current research focuses on employment and economic growth, in both developing and advanced economies.



The Harvard University Center for African Studies in partnership with the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) is hosting a series of webinars on the topic of COVID-19 and Africa. Held each Wednesday for one hour from 10am EST, CAS’ Africa and COVID-19 Webinar Series will bring together the private sector, policy makers, academics, and practitioners for a series of conversations across health, technology, and economy, among others. Please check  our COVID-19 Resources page for upcoming webinars and recordings of previous webinars. Join our weekly newsletter to receive updated information.

7:00AM PDT (California)
10:00AM EDT (Boston/New York)
3:00PM WAT (Nigeria/UK)
4:00PM CAT (South Africa)
5:00PM EAT (Ethiopia/Kenya) 

ORGANIZERS: Harvard Center for African Studies & Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention