President Ruto Urges US To Review Economic Partnership With Africa

December 16, 2022
President William Ruto has called on the US to review its economic partnership with Africa, saying Africa must be regarded as an investment destination, and not a trade destination market for manufactured goods.

The President who was addressing the US-Africa Summit on ‘The Future of Africa’s Trade and Investment’ called on the US to take advantage of Africa’s huge population, the prospects under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) which is on the cusp of taking off and availability of labor and green energy potential in Africa to drive prosperity on a global scale.

President Ruto also used the opportunity to position Kenya as one of the most favorable investment destinations for the abundant US capital, attributing its competitive advantage to a maturing constitutional democracy and well-developed financial and commercial ecosystem.

Later, the President was hosted at a high-level roundtable at Arizona State University’s Thunderbird School of Management, on innovating, accelerating, and scaling the Konza Technopolis also known as the Silicon Savannah, that brought together corporate executives and stakeholders across various sectors.

Key announcements made include:

1. Commitment to work with Kenya to advance space technology.

2. Commitment to collaborate towards the establishment of robust Kenya Creative Industries.

3. Commitments to work with Kenya towards Climate Innovations / Carbon Removal Collaborations and carbon trading technologies/carbon markets.

4. Commitment on mobilizing the network to extend research for the ethical and responsible deployment of ocean-based Carbon Dioxide Reduction.

5. Commitments on Direct air capture, Carbon Products, and waste-to-energy solutions.

6. Commitment to Host the Kauffman Fellow Africa Venture Capital Summit in Kenya Sept 2023, bringing 300 of the world’s top venture capitalists to Nairobi.

On Wednesday the President also secured the following commitments;

1. Commitment by Visa to support Kenya’s Financial Inclusion Fund (Huster Fund), e-commerce growth, Government digitization and e-government initiative.

2. Commitment by Microsoft to support Kenya trading on digital skilling for jobs, support in digital infrastructure development, empowering SMEs and Startups through digital technologies.

3. Commitment by Google to establish a product development centre in Kenya and support digitization plan on government services.

4. Commitment by Rockefeller Foundation to make Kenya a clean energy destination.

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