As she started a week-long tour of the continent to counter the influence of rival China, US Vice President Kamala Harris said on Sunday that the US will boost investment in Africa and help spur economic growth.
In recent decades, China has made significant investments in Africa, particularly in the development of infrastructure and natural resources. At the same time, Russian impact has increased, in part due to the deployment of Russian military personnel from the private military contractor Wagner Group to support governments in a number of nations.
As soon as she landed in Ghana, her first stop on a trip that will also take her to Tanzania and Zambia, Harris declared, “On this trip I intend to do work that is focused on increasing investments here on the continent and facilitating economic growth and opportunity.”
In part to provide a counterbalance to rival powers, the administration of US President Joe Biden has worked to deepen relations with Africa.
Before a US-Africa summit in December, the US pledged $55 billion to the region over the following three years. During a visit to Niger this month, Secretary of State Antony Blinken revealed $150 million in new humanitarian assistance for Africa’s Sahel region.
According to top US officials, Harris will also talk about China’s involvement in debt restructuring, as well as China’s involvement in technology and economic problems in Africa that the US finds troubling.
This week, Harris will meet with Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo and travel to a former slave castle where captives were transported to America during the time of the slave trade.
Harris will be in Ghana from March 26-29, then in Tanzania from March 29-31. Zambia will be her lsast stop on March 31 and April 1. She intends to reveal both public and private sector investments during her meeting with the presidents of the three nations.
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