United States Vice President Kamala Harris on Wednesday in Marrakech highlighted the development opportunities offered by Africa, “the fastest growing continent in the world”, expressing the commitment of his country to contribute to the promotion of “inclusive and sustainable” economic growth in this continent.
In a video message shown at the opening of the 14th edition of the USA-Africa Business Summit, Harris noted to this effect that by 2030, the continent will have 1.7 billion inhabitants, or 1.5% of the world’s population.
“The continent is increasingly young and connected and the demand for food, healthcare, education, technology and infrastructure is only increasing,” she said.
However, noted the US Vice-President, the barriers, namely limited access to capital, the high cost of financing, recovery from the covid-19 pandemic, the climate crisis and food insecurity, constitute real challenges for the continent.
To this end, she assured that the Biden-Harris administration is committed to working with the continent to address all these issues, particularly within the framework of the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063, recalling , in this regard, that “since last October, the United States has pledged more than $7 billion in humanitarian and food security assistance to Africa, with the goal of promoting inclusive and sustainable economic growth, developing capital flows and promote the spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation, across the continent”.
Dwelling on the issue of food insecurity, Ms. Harris expressed the desire of the United States to urgently increase food production and exports within Africa, a challenge that has worsened, according to her. , after the war in Ukraine.
She also said she was happy to see the progress made in the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (Zlecaf), affirming to this effect, her country’s willingness to collaborate with the organization in order to be able to ensure its hit.
And to maintain that the United States is committed to putting in place all the necessary tools and provisions, including the development of financing, technical assistance or even support for legal and regulatory reforms, with a view to helping all African partners to prosper and move forward.
In addition, the vice president announced a summit between the United States and dozens of African countries in December in Washington to discuss challenges ranging from food security to climate change.
This summit, scheduled for December 13-15, she continued, will demonstrate the United States’ enduring commitment to Africa and underscore the importance of the United States-Africa relationship as well as a increased cooperation on common global priorities.
According to her, the United States’ collaboration with leaders of African governments, civil society, the private sector and the African diaspora will help to address some of these challenges and in turn unlock the opportunities that the public sector or the private sector can achieve on their own.
It should be noted that the 14th USA-Africa Business Summit which continues until July 22, in partnership with the “Corporate Council on Africa” (CCA), is attended in particular by a large American government delegation, African ministers and decision makers from the largest American multinationals and African business communities.
Offering the opportunity to establish future-oriented USA-Morocco-Africa tripartite business partnerships, this Summit also represents an opportunity to consolidate the strategic positioning of Morocco, the only African country to have concluded a free trade agreement with the United States, as a hub for Africa and a reference economic partner for the USA.
This conclave will be marked by the organization of high-level dialogues, plenary sessions, panels, round tables and side-events around the priorities of the Continent in terms of food security, health, agriculture, energy transition , new technologies, infrastructures and integration of industrial ecosystems.