*Urge Leaders to root out corruption in order to promote economic development
WASHINGTON, Samantha Fox (PSN) — President Obama Tuesday at the Mandarin Hotel in Washington, DC said that Nigeria, South Africa and Angola remains America’s top trading partner in the region. He made this statement during the U.S Africa business summit.
Obama pledged increased American assistance to Africa, although he added that most of the improvements must come from Africa itself.
“Let’s do even more business together,” Obama told delegates to the first-ever U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit.
Obama told the over 50 African nations that some of their governments must bolster the rule of law, reform government regulations, and root out corruption in order to promote economic development.
Improved security on a continent that has known its share of terrorism is also essential, Obama said, telling delegates that “the future belongs to those who build, not to those who destroy.”
In his remarks to the summit’s U.S.-Africa Business Forum, Obama also discussed pledges of more than $14 billion by various American businesses for help with projects involving clean energy, aviation, banking, and construction.
Coca-Cola will help provide clean water, General Electric will assist with infrastructure development, and Marriott will build more hotels, Obama said.
“The United States is determined to be a partner in Africa’s success,” Obama said.
The president discussed a total of $33 billion in public and private assistance, including $7 billion in new financing to promote U.S. exports and investments in Africa, and another $12 billion in help from the President’s Power Africa initiative involving private sector partners, the World Bank, and the government of Sweden.
As part of what he called a campaign to do more business in Africa, Obama discussed efforts to increase trade between the United States and Africa, expand African electricity and other infrastructure, improve trade between nations within Africa, and help young entrepreneurs and other business leaders get started.
Earlier before his speech, Obama signed an executive order today creating “the President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa.”
Meanwhile, earlier President Goodluck Jonathan with some of his staff met with the US vice president, Joe Biden at the White House.
On Tuesday night, President Jonathan will join other Africa’s heads of state to attend a dinner by president Obama and first lady Michelle at the South Lawn of the White House.