U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit: Opinion
As the clock ticks down towards the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit on August 4, the level of expectation is ramping up as to what the summit will deliver. Foreign Policy’s Gordon Lubold is the latest to distill views from Africa experts, and his does not make for encouraging reading. But while the article does a good job of building a discussion around this important event, it makes the common mistake of focusing too heavily on China’s engagement with the continent and ignores the key successes of the summit in the process. In a recent blog, my colleagues and I compare the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit with similar forums organized by not only China but also the European Union and Japan. Although not all our recommendations have been followed, we believe that the main measure of success of the first summit between African leaders and the 44th U.S. president should be whether the United States can seize an unprecedented opportunity to build a strategy “together” with Africa.