New US strategy on Africa described as promising

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who is currently touring South Africa, announced the new strategy on Monday during an address at the University of Pretoria’s Future Africa Institute.

FILE: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks during an address at the University of Pretoria’s Future Africa Institute on 8 August 2022. Picture: @SecBlinken/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - The new focus on African nations’ economies outlined by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has been described as promising.

Blinken, who is currently touring South Africa, announced the new strategy on Monday during an address at the University of Pretoria’s Future Africa Institute.

He has highlighted four priority areas, which he says are at its heart: openness, fulfilling the promise of democracy, recovering from the impact of COVID-19 and a clean energy transition.

And importantly, he says it’s focused on what the US will do with African nations and its peoples.

Professor Christopher Isike from the University of Pretoria’s Department of Political Sciences says this is significant.

"It’s not that different from what we had before, so there’s nothing really new apart from stressing on the fact that they want to see us or treat us as partners. I think there was a lot of time spent on hammering that point and recognising our agency as Africans, to be able to solve world problems, to decide for ourselves our development path and even the right for us to decide who our development partners should be. I think that’s very important. Whether they would go ahead so that it’s implemented, would be a different matter," Isike said.