The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Theresa May, recently completed a three-day tour of Africa and made some pretty big announcements.

In order to support African markets and deepen trade ties, May has vowed to invest 4 billion pounds ($5.1 billion) in the continent.

This news comes just over a year after the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union. Following “Brexit,” the UK’s goal has been to strengthen its international partnerships.

In a statement, May said:

“This week I am looking forward to discussing how we can do that alongside Africa to help deliver important investment and jobs as well as continue to work together to maintain stability and security.”

Africa will likely see more sustainable development and long-term economic growth as a result of Britain’s direct investment. May believes that treating Africa as an equal partner will allow British companies to expand trade with nations such as Cote D’Ivoire and Senegal.

May said:

“True partnerships are not about one party doing unto another, but states, governments, businesses and individuals working together in a responsible way to achieve common goals.”

May continued by stating that the main goal of the UK’s investment is to harness the “innovation and creativity” of Africa’s young people. Over 70 percent of Africa’s population is under 30 years old, and as such, many initiatives are geared towards young people. The younger generation is quite literally the future of Africa.

“The challenges facing Africa are not Africa’s alone,” May said. “It is the world’s interest to see these jobs created.”

During a speech at a grade school in Cape Town, South Africa, May announced that an educational scholarship for African students to attend college in the UK would be expanded.

A video of the prime minister dancing with school children in Cape Town has gone viral.

Later this week, May will be making visits to Nigeria and Kenya, both of which are former British colonies. A representative of the UK has not visited Nairobi since Margaret Thatcher in 1988.

 

Featured Image via Flickr.

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