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 Obama to Send 3,000 Troops to Liberia in Ebola Fight

At Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, President says US will take leadership role for a global response to deadly Ebola virus that is ravaging West Africa More

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

Muslims in Kunming say that they condemn the violence, it is not a reflection of the true beliefs of their faith More

Humanitarian Aid, Equipment Blocked in Cameroon

Move is seen as a developing supply crisis in West Africa 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.
NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Spacei
X
September 17, 2014 4:20 AM
The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid