Prime Minister Theresa May is to unveil an ambitious package of support to create new wealth in Africa – reducing the continent’s reliance upon aid and improving global security.
Speaking to G20 leaders in Hamburg today (Saturday), the Prime Minister will call for global action to unlock the huge untapped economic potential of Africa.
She will say a more prosperous Africa would lift millions of people out of poverty while also offering the UK greater security at home and significant future trading opportunities.
The new long term approach to be set out by the Prime Minister will be based on three key principles:
- Building a modern partnership with Africa which is focussed much more strongly on supporting African aspirations for trade, investment and growth;
- Creating millions of new jobs;
- A commitment to work with others including the private sector to stimulate trillions of pounds/dollars investment into Africa.
Some 20 million jobs need to be created in Africa every year until 2035 just to absorb new entrants into the labour force.
The Prime Minister will say to the G20 that if young people remain permanently excluded with jobs and opportunities always out of reach then destabilising migratory patterns will persist – with extremist causes and criminality more likely to thrive.
But the Prime Minister will say that, with the right approach, if we get this right, our efforts will make it less likely that people migrate to Europe, turn to extremism or join criminal networks.
The Prime Minister will announce a package of new measures designed to help Africa reduce its reliance on aid and boost its prosperity and stability over the long-term, including:
- Announcing a new London Centre for Global Disaster Protection, which will use world-leading UK expertise and innovation to help developing countries strengthen disaster planning and use insurance to provide more cost-effective, rapid and reliable finance in emergencies, such as the severe drought in East Africa. This will reduce the need for expensive humanitarian aid, reassure private investors and help people rebuild their lives. Insurance protection built through this centre could provide £2 billion when crises hit to ensure that the high costs of disasters aren’t borne by people or businesses trapping them in cycles of poverty, and its work to build insurance markets in developing countries could generate billions of pounds each year in additional national investment to boost economic development;
- New support (£60 million) to help Africa integrate into global financial markets, by building a robust and transparent financial sector that will attract more investment and financial innovation, help its banking sector stand on its own two feet and direct finance where it is most needed. This paves the way for a strong partnership with the City of London, creating more opportunities for London to become the finance hub for Africa;
- Providing £61 million to boost trade infrastructure in Tanzania – including working with the World Bank to nearly double the capacity of Dar es Salaam port;
- £30 million dedicated to helping Somalia’s state and economy recover from conflict by building a functioning civil service for sound economic management and helping up to a million people benefit from better roads and water supply; and
- £35 million UK support to Ethiopia and £11.8 million to Rwanda to help attract private investment so these countries can be less dependent on aid.
The Prime Minister will call on other G20 leaders to prove similar assistance to other African countries to help create millions of new jobs, stimulate trillions of investment and harness the power of trade.
This will enable African refugees to be supported in the first safe country they reach and reduce their need for risky onward journeys.
Germany, the G20 hosts, are already championing this approach, including through a Compact with Africa initiative to promote private investment. The Prime Minister is urging others to now follow the UK and German lead on this vital issue.
Speaking in the margins of the G20 summit, the Prime Minister said: We must not forget that progress in Africa benefits the UK at home.
Our international aid work is helping to build Britain’s trading partners of the future, creating real alternatives to mass migration, and enhancing our security, while simultaneously ensuring we abide by our moral responsibility to meet the immediate humanitarian needs of some of the poorest people on earth. This is the future of aid, delivering value for money for the taxpayer.