Affleck urges US to invest in the DRC

WASHINGTON – Hollywood star Ben Affleck called on Wednesday for targeted investment in the private sector in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, where he sees a window of opportunity to end a cycle of unrest.

The A-list actor and director, who has founded a non-profit group called the Eastern Congo Initiative and has made repeated trips to the region, advocated the United States shift its priorities in delivering aid, in a hearing at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

People would rather be invested in than accept aid, would rather have a job than ….. Continue Reading

Obama Orders Review of U.S. Aid to Egypt

Hours after United States officials confirmed that plans to deliver F-16 fighter jets to Egypt will go ahead despite the overthrow of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, President Barack Obama took a step back and ordered a review of U.S. assistance to Egypt’s government.

“Given the events of last week, the President has directed relevant departments and agencies to review our assistance to the government of Egypt,” said a Pentagon statement quoted by Al Jazeera.

Earlier Wednesday, officials told the Reuters news agency that the United States plans to go through with the delivery of ….. Continue Reading

Why Obama’s Trip to Africa Is Long Overdue

The continent’s economy, struggle with terrorism, and burgeoning democracies are all vitally important to the U.S. Youths walk past a poster of U.S. President Barack Obama and Senegal’s President Macky Sall before Obama’s visit in Dakar on June 26, 2013. (Joe Penney/Reuters) It has been much noted that President Barack Obama, the son of a Kenyan, has made just one visit to Africa as president – a one-day stop to Ghana in 2009. Some Africans have expressed disappointment in what they see as the president’s lack of attention, complaining that on his watch, there has been no new American initiative ….. Continue Reading

Barack Obama’s visit to boost US relations with African countries

No sitting US President has visited Kenya. President Barack Obama follows in his predecessor’s footsteps as he skips his ancestral land.

He last visited Kenya as a Senator in 2006. A visit by such a high profile global figure invigorates nearly all sectors of a country due to its significance.

It would have been a great chance for the business community to jump at the opportunity provided by the hordes of executives accompanying Obama. Obama arrives in Africa with a delegation of 1,200 people, including hundreds of business executives and a coterie of economic ….. Continue Reading

Doing Business in Africa Forum Presents Opportunities for American Businesses in Sub-Saharan Region

Earlier this week, we attended the Doing Business in Africa Forum at the White House. This was the first forum of the Doing Business in Africa campaign that the Commerce Department launched three months ago in Johannesburg, South Africa. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank gave the opening remarks and focused on strengthening commercial ties between the United States and Sub-Saharan Africa. She emphasized that as the continent’s wealth increases, so does the demand for improved infrastructure, energy services, and high-quality consumer and agricultural products – all of which American companies are well positioned to provide. In fact, ….. Continue Reading