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    Africa trade book wins award

    July 4, 2024

    David Luke (centre) with his winning award for his book, How Africa Trades

    AS African countries gear up to take advantage of their Continental Free Trade Area, a book that has been judged to be a highly relevant and “an excellent primer to understanding the often-tangled world of African commerce” has won the Business Council for Africa’s African Business Book of the Year Awards.
    Held in London on Wednesday, the event brought together authors, industry leaders and Africa watchers to celebrate the winners of this literary award in the business and economics category.
    This year’s winner is Sierra Leonean-born David Luke for his book How Africa Trades.
    Specialising in African trade policy and trade negotiations, Luke is a Professor in Practice and Strategic Director at the Firoz Lalji Institute for Africa at the London School of Economics.
    He has decades of experience in policy advisory services, managing and catalysing research, building partnerships, training and capacity development for private sector and government. His book was recognised for its lucid storytelling, evidence-based research and its accessible writing style.
    The first runner-up is Dipo Faloyin for his book Africa Is Not A Country.
    Lagos-born Faloyin is a senior editor at VICE magazine, where he focuses on race, culture, and identity around the world.
    His work was described by judges as “very well written and researched; rich in content, captivating, engaging and funny”.
    The second runner-up is Jozef Mols for his book Ethiopian Airlines: The African Aviation Powerhouse, which the judges described as “being brave enough to tell the unique and fantastic story of Ethiopian Airlines.”
    Born in Antwerp, Mols studied applied economics with emphasis on marketing, consular sciences and economics of developing countries.
    The judges noted that African books in the business and economics category remained highly underrepresented.
    However, the judges said, books such as Mols’ showed that there were great stories to be told and that the journeys of some of these wonderful businesses were engaging and important.
    “We launched the BCA Annual Africa Business Awards last year to encourage and promote serious discussion and analysis of businesses and economies in Africa,” said Arnold Ekpe, chairman of the Business Council for Africa.
    “I strongly believe that it is important to have on record the stories of businesses and industries on the continent.
    “We urge publishers and writers to take the plunge and I am sure we can have a larger array of books in this particular category; something we have seen in the world of fiction.
    “We congratulate everyone who participated and who are contributing to telling African business stories,” Ekpe added.
    This year’s winner received $10,000 in prize money, the runner up $5,000 and the second runner up $2,500.
    The Awards this year received almost 30 submissions from various authors and publishers across the African continent as well as suggested books by the editorial team of African Business magazine.
    A shortlist of eight books was selected by the Awards Committee, from which the winners were selected.
    The event served as a testament to the power of business literature in inspiring and driving positive change across Africa, noted BCA, an organisation dedicated to “fostering economic growth, trade and investment in Africa with a focus on promoting business excellence and collaboration”.

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