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US ‘all-in on Africa’s future’

President Biden on Wednesday announced new trade opportunities and investments in Africa to establish the United States’s commitment to Africa’s future during the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit.

“The United States is all-in on Africa’s future,” Biden said at a meeting on economic ties between the U.S. and Africa that included CEOs from more than 300 U.S. and African companies.

He announced a memorandum of understanding with Africa on free trade security in order to unlock new opportunities for trade, as well as investments in infrastructure to facilitate trade within Africa.

Additionally, Biden announced that the U.S. will invest $350 million to facilitate Africa’s participation in the digital economy and the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation will invest nearly $370 million for new projects.

“Improving Africa’s infrastructure is essential to our vision of building a stronger global economy that can better withstand the kinds of shocks that we’ve seen the past few years,” he said.

The U.S. this week is hosting the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit for the first time since 2014. The summit in Washington includes 50 leaders from Africa and seeks to bolster future relations with the continent and counter Chinese and Russian influence.

“When Africa succeeds, the United States succeeds. Quite frankly, the whole world succeeds as well,” Biden said. “The only question when I took office was not if we we’d host another U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, but when. My administration’s engagement with Africa and the priority we place on these relationships began on day one.”

The president quipped that he would keep his remarks short because the World Cup game between Morocco and France was set to begin at 2 p.m. Morocco is the first African nation to play in the semifinals of the World Cup.

Morocco Prime Minister Aziz Akhannouch is in Washington for the summit.

Later on Wednesday, Biden will hold a meeting on free and fair elections in Africa and close the day with a dinner for leaders and spouses.

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