By Adedapo Adesanya
Top sub-Saharan Africa financial institution, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will be working together to increase a two-way trade and investment between Africa and the United States.
The partnership, which will be done through the Prosper Africa initiative, will ensure that businesses are equipped with the technical and financial tools they need to enter into new trading and investment relationships.
This was revealed in a statement which said USAID will provide technical assistance and advisory services to prospective businesses through its Trade and Investment platforms, and connect UBA with African Diaspora business groups working across the United States.
“The MOU enables UBA, the only sub-Saharan African bank licensed to operate in the United States, to expand its reach and extend financing to American companies in the United States looking to do business with African nations.
“Recognising tremendous growth opportunities, USAID and UBA are collaborating to advance Prosper Africa’s goal of substantially increasing two-way trade between Africa and the United States.
“By working together, they will extend financing and technical assistance to businesses that will strengthen the American economy, grow African economies, and create jobs on both sides of the Atlantic,” the statement read.
Both parties reached an understanding at the opening ceremony of the Tunisia Prosper Africa Conference, which was organised by the US Embassy in Tunis and the American Chamber of Commerce of Tunisia.
The event facilitated US and African business-to-business connections and featured remarks by key representatives from the U.S. Government and the U.S. and African private sector.
Speaking at the event, the French spokesperson for the State Department, Ms Marissa Scott, said, “The US government is committing up to 50 million dollars (45.4 million euros) to implement Prosper Africa.
“It may not seem like much, but it is a key to opening the door to trade and investment,” she added.
Bilateral trade between the United States and all African countries reached only $62 billion in 2018.
Prosper Africa was announced at the end of 2018 by the Trump administration, which presented it as a way of responding to stiff competition from both Russia and China in Africa.
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