President Joe Bidden has told dozens of African leaders gathered in Washington that the United States is “all in on Africa’s future,” laying out billions in promised government funding and private investment Wednesday to help the growing continent in health, infrastructure, business and technology.
“The U.S. is committed to supporting every aspect of Africa’s growth,” Biden told the leaders and others in a big conference hall, presenting his vision at the three-day U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit of how the U.S. can be a critical catalyst.
The US President listed many of the deals that have been concluded and recalled the major lines of investment for the development of the African continent.
“I think for the US we don’t tend to take our private sector companies by the hand, you don’t see an American president taking private sector companies anywhere in the world, whereas, other countries, when they go, when Macron goes, he takes French companies with him, they open up the doors for their businesses. I think for the US we are doing more of that now”, said Florizelle Liser from Washington-based charity, Corporate Council on Africa.
In his speech, Joe Biden mentioned the solar power plant projects underway in Angola valued at two billion dollars. A theme that led Angolan President João Lourenço to share the Angolan experience in the panel of the Partnership for Infrastructure Investment, a program that should have the largest financial allocation.
“Angola and Africa above all need access to finance to develop infrastructure but in order for this access to be effective we need to know how to get to this resource. Often what we lack is to know or master the mechanisms and especially the processes that allow us to get the green light to use these resources”, said João Baptista Borges, Angolan minister for Energy and Water.
The Biden administration is also going to accompany American and African investors and is already working in this direction.
“Our focus as we are heading for the end of the summit is going to be to identify the key areas of follow-up and collaboration in order to make these various investments materialize”, added Ramin Toloui, assistant secretary for economic and business affairs for the State Department.
The second day of the summit was also marked by the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the United States and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), an agreement that, for Biden, will bring the two sides of the Atlantic even closer together.