News / Africa

US Takes Different Approach to Africa than China

US Takes Different Approach to Africa Than Chinai
X
Luis Ramirez
August 06, 2014 11:50 PM
President Barack Obama's effort to engage Africa brought together the largest summit of African leaders ever held in Washington. But China has hosted such summits before, and the U.S. gathering highlights what some see as a belated U.S. effort to catch up and expand its economic ties with Africa. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
US Takes Different Approach to Africa Than China
Luis Ramirez

President Barack Obama's effort to engage Africa brought together the largest summit of African leaders ever held in Washington. But China has hosted such summits before, and the U.S. gathering highlights what some see as a belated U.S. effort to catch up and expand its economic ties with Africa.

The might of large American corporations like Coca Cola is powering the Obama administration's latest efforts to build its partnership with Africa.

The company at the summit announced it's boosting its investment by $5 billion in safe water and other programs.

China, too, has invested heavily -- doing twice as much trade with Africa as the U.S. But Beijing has been accused of ignoring governance and human rights issues.

Corporate investment

Obama announced $14 billion of American corporate investment at the Africa summit, but indicated the United States will have a different approach.

“Capital is one thing. Development programs and projects are one thing. But, but rule of law? Regulatory reform? Good governance? Those things matter even more, because people should be able to start a business and ship their goods without having to pay a bribe or hire somebody's cousin.”

This was a big summit, but Beijing started hosting equally large numbers of African leaders 14 years ago.

U.S. officials say there is no competition with China for Africa.

Human rights, governance

Analyst Richard Downie agrees. "I think at heart, the U.S. and China have mutual interests in Africa. They're both interested in peace, stability and security because that's the best environment in which to grow markets and do business."

He said the U.S. seeks a new kind of engagement.

“The U.S. has traditionally focused very much on development issues, on tackling some of the big public health crises in Africa, such as HIV/AIDS and trying to resolve some of the most persistent conflicts," said Downie. "So it’s really focused on the downsides, the problems of Africa rather than the upside, the economic opportunities that China is focused on.”

This summit focused on the upside, with economic issues taking center stage. There were no sessions devoted to rule of law and justice. White House officials said leaders had a chance to talk about those issues on the sidelines.

You May Like

Video Analysts: Beijing Parade a 'Bazaar' of Stolen Technology

Show commemorating victory over Japan in World War II involved long, medium and short range missiles, a range of tanks and 200 fighter aircraft More

Bernie Sanders Surge Reflects US Shift on Socialism

Although most analysts say it is unlikely he will get the Democratic nomination, Sanders' campaign opens up questions and issues that are otherwise marginalized More

Video On IS Frontline, Kurdish Fighters Ready for Offensive

Peshmerga soldiers say although they need more heavy artillery, they are poised to take the fight to the Islamic State extremists on their turf More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mehmet from: Ankara
August 07, 2014 4:15 PM
turn africa into another detroit..that is the difference.

by: Peter Wu from: canada
August 07, 2014 11:33 AM
yeah, America, try to copy China now? too late and you dont have the money, dude! there is nothing left for america to do in Africa, get out of there.
if you want to help, ok, learn how to shut up first!
In Response

by: Peter wu from: Canada
August 09, 2014 2:46 AM
@mike, are you kidding me? Win win? Did Iraq war has a win win? Or Afghanistan has a win win? Or, Libya, Ukraine?
Where America goes where is chaos, death, everyone loses including America itself. America wasted trillions and thousands soldiers lives in Iraq, but after ten years there is still a mess in Iraq, ppl's life is much worse than under sadams rule!
Mike you are either a troll or an idiot!
In Response

by: Mike from: Canada
August 08, 2014 9:59 AM
When you deal with U.S., there is win-win situation. When you deal with China, China only takes and the other country loose, example Africa and South East Asia. Even Burma doesn't want to deal with China, next Vietnam.

by: Tony from: USA
August 07, 2014 8:49 AM
Hey OmBanana... LOL... you are right, the "pivot" to Asia didn't work... it looks like a stupid joke. and Yeah, we are all looking for new imports of Ebola from Africa... courtesy of the UN... LOL. This idiotic Administration has demoralized our best friends (Israel, Britain) and encouraged our worst enemies (Hamas, Palestinian Jihad, ISIL, Hizbulla, Iran.........)

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outragei
X
Henry Ridgwell
September 04, 2015 11:36 AM
The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outrage

The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Russians Observe 11th Anniversary of Beslan School Attack

This week, Russians have been observing the 11th anniversary of the attack by Islamic militants on a school in Russia's North Caucasus region that killed more than 330 hostages, including 186 children. The three-day siege and massacre that started on September 1, 2004 took place in Beslan, a town in the republic of North Ossetia, and is one of the bloodiest terrorist acts ever in Russia. VOA's Mike Richman reports.
Video

Video Native Americans Debate: Father Serra, Saint or Sinner?

Pope Francis will canonize an 18th century missionary to Spanish California during a papal visit to the United States this month.  But some Native Americans have criticized the elevation to sainthood of the missionary priest, Junipero Serra. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Calais School Offers Another Face of Europe’s Migrant Crisis

Europe is facing mounting criticism over how it’s handling its biggest migration crisis since World War II. But not all Europeans believe building walls or passing repressive policies are the answer. A school for migrants in the French port city of Calais, is opening doors and building bonds across nationalities. VOA's Lisa Bryant reports.
Video

Video Kurdish Fighters on IS Frontline Ready for Offensive

Finger on the trigger, the Kurdish Peshmerga soldier stared across the dust at a village taken over by Islamic State extremists. The Kurdistan’s Khazir frontline, just 45 minutes from the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul. And at this point, the militants were less than two kilometers away. VOA's Sharon Behn reports.
Video

Video China Announces Troop Cuts at WWII Parade

Chinese President Xi Jinping Thursday announced plans to cut the world’s largest military force by 300,000 troops. The announcement was made during a massive military parade to commemorate victory over Japan in World War II. The event was shunned by most Western leaders and for some is raising fresh concerns about China’s military ambitions. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Russia-Japan Relations Cool as Putin Visits China for WWII Anniversary

Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Beijing for commemorations of the 70th anniversary of China's WWII victory over Japan. Putin is expected to visit Japan later this year, but tensions between Tokyo and Moscow over islands disputed since the war, and sanctions over Ukraine, could pour cold water on the plan. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Yemen ‘on Brink of Disaster’ as Medical Shortages Soar

Aid agencies warn Yemen is on the brink of humanitarian disaster – with up to half a million children facing severe malnutrition, and hospitals running out of basic medicines. There are fears Yemen's civil war could escalate as the coalition led by Saudi Arabia tries to drive back Houthi rebels, who seized control of much of the country earlier this year. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Apps Helping Kenyan Businesses Stay Ahead of Counterfeiters

Counterfeit goods in Kenya cost the government as much as $1 billion each year in lost tax revenues. The fake goods also hurt entrepreneurs who find it hard to carve out a niche in the market and retain customers. But as Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi, information technology is being used to try to beat the problem.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.

VOA Blogs