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African Leaders Set to Meet in Nigeria - 2002-03-25

African leaders meet in Nigeria Monday to discuss ways of implementing projects to boost economic activity on the continent.

The two-day meeting in Abuja, Nigeria's capital, brings together the heads of the state from about 20 countries.

The summit is sponsored by the New Partnership for Africa's Development, known as NEPAD, which seeks to target investments of 64 billion dollars a year to revive ailing African economies. Areas to be discussed at the summit will include peace and security, agriculture and market access, and economic planning.

The French news agency reports says South African President Thabo Mbeki, considered a driving force behind NEPAD, met for closed-door talks with Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo Sunday ahead of the summit.

Countries to attend the Abuja summit are: Nigeria, Senegal, Mali, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Cameroon, Congo Republic, Gabon, Ethiopia, Mauritius, Rwanda, Algeria, Egypt, Tunisia and Zambia.

Tanzania, Uganda, Sao Tome and Principe and Ghana will attend as observers. Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretian, who will host the G-Eight summit of most developed nations in Canada in June, will hold talks with six African leaders in Nigeria on April 5.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.