In recent years, cultural and creative industries have played a growing role in the development of economies, in terms of their economic contribution and their power to affect social change and cultural participation.
In 2013, the cultural and creative sectors generated more than two billion US dollars of income and 29.5 million jobs worldwide, but only 3% of these jobs are from Africa and the Middle East, according to a 2013 study by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) called “Cultural Time”.
For this reason, the African Export and Import Bank (Afreximbank), in collaboration with UNESCO and the African Development Bank Group, developed the Creative Africa Exchange (CAX) as a “catalyst that brings together the assets and resources identified within the sector creative ”to consolidate, monetize and impact African creative and cultural economies, according to the CAX website. In December 2018, CAX was launched during the Intra-Africa Trade Fair in Cairo, Egypt.
African creative talents from the fields of music, art, design, fashion literature, publications, film and television joined in the Creative Africa Exchange Weekend in Kigali, Rwanda, between January 16 and 18, 2020. It is promoted as the “first continental activity dedicated to promoting exchange within the creative and cultural sector in Africa”, with more than 2000 participants from 68 countries.
Over 2,000 participants from 68 Countries expected at CAX weekend in Kigali https://t.co/28gWP2HjNB
– africanews (@africanews) January 4, 2020
The arrival of more than 2000 participants from 68 countries is expected in the Creative Africa Exchange Weekend (CAX), which starts in Kigali, Rwanda, on January 16, in what the organizers are describing as the first activity Mainland of Africa to promote exchange within the creative and cultural sector.
More than 2000 participants from 68 countries are expected on the CAX weekend in Kigali.
On the second day of the meeting in Kigali, Professor Benedict Oramah, president of the African Development Bank (Afreximbank), announced a fund of 500 million dollars “to support the production and trade of African cultural and creative products” in the following two years , New Times Rwanda reported.
Omarah told attendees that the funds, which would be used in what the bank was already doing, would be accessible as bank credit lines and direct financing for operators and as guarantors. He said that “although Africa has a large group of talent, it lacked the infrastructure and capacity to market its creative talent and” reap the vast fortunes they expect, “according to Afreximbank. Continuous:
Because of underinvestment in the creative and cultural industries, Africa is largely absent in the global market of ideas, values and aesthetics as conveyed through music, theater, literature, film and television. African countries import overwhelmingly more creative goods than they export or trade amongst themselves.
Due to insufficient investment in the creative and cultural sectors, Africa is almost completely absent in the world market of ideas, values and aesthetics that are transmitted through music, theater, literature, film and television. African countries overwhelmingly import more creative goods than those that export or trade with each other.
He praised the “astronomical growth of Egypt in creative exports in the last decade.” In December 2019, Afreximbank was awarded the International Fashion Award (IFA) in Cairo for its role in supporting the creative sector in Africa. Omarah also praised Nigeria's Nollywood film industry.
On Twitter, the artists who attended showed their appreciation for the meeting that took place at the Intare Conference Center in Kigali:
Siki Jo-An, singer from South Africa, called the meeting “amazing”:
The CAX weekend was amazing in Kigali, Rwanda ??
Today I am singing at the Africa Forum Corporate Event. I love my Job!
RandMidrand, South Africa. ?? pic.twitter.com/BHBo4yCDLQ
– Siki Jo-An (@Joan_Siki) January 22, 2020
This CAX weekend was amazing in Kigali, Rwanda. ??
Today I sing in the Corporate Africa Photo. I love my work!
RandMidrand, South Africa.
The organizers of the CAX weekend praised the performance of Marina Debol, singer of Rwanda:
We are still re-living some of our favorite moments from CAX weekend and this sensational performance from Marina Debol is definitely on our list! pic.twitter.com/cTqPMLTjDU
– Cax Africa (@caxafrica) January 20, 2020
We continue to relive some of our favorite CAX weekend moments, and this sensational performance by Marina Debol is definitely on our list!
In his speech at the CAX 2018 weekend in Cairo, Nigerian artist D'Banj told bankers and investors:
What we need is for you guys to really understand is that content is the new crude oil and however well you respect the oil industry you have to respect the creative industry.
What we need is for you to understand that the content is new crude oil and, as well as respect the oil sector, you must respect the creative sector.
After the CAX 2020 weekend, CAX Week will come during the second Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF2020) from September 1 to 7, 2020, also in Kigali.