The Africa Society Calls for Respectful, Robust US-Africa Policy and Engagement

Filed under: HEADLINES |

Washington, DC

Friday August 21, 2020

For Immediate Release 

As the United States of America prepares for the 2020 presidential election in November, The Africa Society calls on the 2021 presidential administration to adopt robust policies and actions that are respectful, purposeful, strategic relative to the nations of the African Continent, and advance United States relations with Africa. As a leading non-government, non-partisan organization that educates and advocates for Africa, we consider such policies and partnerships with African nations as crucial and critical to a sound United States foreign policy which is beneficial to the United States and to African partners.

The continent of Africa currently boasts countries that have the seven fastest growing and thriving world economies; mineral and other resources that attract US business and commercial interests, biodiverse ecosystems, and the largest number of persons under age 15 worldwide.

The growth of African economies will be greatly accelerated by taking advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement by all major economies of Africa. Tariffs will be managed in order to promote free trade amongst countries allowing trading partners and manufacturers to have a unitary set of rules that will apply to all countries. African nations have proven themselves strong and loyal partners with the United States in international fora, peacekeeping, and countering terrorist threats within their borders, regionally and worldwide.

As the world is experiencing this year, deadly pandemic and health challenges are an ever-present reality with global implications. Climate challenges also threaten the achievements of Africans and the world community.

Additionally, the United States boasts a population that includes approximately 45 million persons of African descent, coupled with a large African Diaspora who have made significant contributions to the development and prosperity the United States enjoys.

Many African nations have made significant strides in democratization, respect for human rights, engagement with civil society, and a commitment to improving the lives of their citizens, all issues of importance to the United States. Geopolitical realities leave many countries inter alia, targets for internal and external threats, food insecurity, and violent extremism which have consequences for the United States.

In view of our rich history of cooperation, the United States must be considered as a reliable, respected and valued international partner that African nations and people will choose to work with to overcome these challenges and maximize benefits for a mutually productive relationship.

Ambassador (Ret.) Pamela E. Bridgewater

CEO and Board Chair, The Africa Society

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