Thursday, January 7, 2010

US reaffirms commitment to emerging African economies

Afrol News, 7 January 2010

The US Chamber of Commerce’s Africa Business Initiative will embark on a five-day trade mission to encourage, promote, and facilitate trade and investment between the United States and the African continent. The mission is also meant to demonstrate the ongoing commitment of the American business community in supporting Africa’s economic growth.

“American businesses understand that export-led growth is the surest way to create jobs here at home while also stimulating the African economy,” said Scott Eisner, executive director for Africa Programmes at the US Chamber. “African nations are among the most important trading partners for US companies and the Chamber stands ready to assist American business interests in entering these markets.”

The trade mission includes stops in Accra, Ghana, where on January 6-10 the Chamber will sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Ghana Investment Promotion Center. This agreement represents a commitment by both business groups to encourage trade between the United States and Ghana. “With nearly one billion people, Africa is a continent we can no longer overlook. The business community is looking for new and innovative investment strategies in the region,” Mr Eisner said.

While stopping in Lagos, Nigeria on January 11-12, the Chamber will partner with The Economist to host the CEO conference, “Renewing Business Confidence.” This event brings together the country’s ministers of Transport, Petroleum Resources, Information and Communications, and the Central Bank Governor. “Businesses planning to invest in Nigeria must negotiate a highly complex business environment which offers a wealth of opportunities,” Mr Eisner said. “This conference will highlight the longer-term economic prospects for Nigeria.”

The Africa Business Initiative (ABI) engages the US business community on legislative policies that foster foreign direct investment in Africa, facilitates trade between the United States and African countries, and introduces US companies to the continent’s vast economic opportunities.

The US Chamber is the world's largest business federation representing more than 3 million businesses and organisations of every size, sector, and region.