- Representative Gregory W. Meeks, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today sent a letter to President Biden to congratulate the Administration on hosting a successful US Africa Leaders Summit and to urge swift mobilization of resources necessary to support implementation of Summit commitments.
Dear President Biden
I am writing to congratulate you and your Administration on a successful U.S. Africa Leaders Summit. Establishing continuity and following up on the Summit’s commitments will be a long-term endeavor, and I applaud your appointment of Ambassador Johnnie Carson as Special Presidential Representative for U.S. – Africa Leaders Summit Implementation. It will be critical for Ambassador Carson to receive the staff and resources necessary to develop and oversee an effective implementation plan that incorporates consistent outreach and engagement with African partners, Congress, and the private sector.
I am grateful to have played a role in the Summit, which offered an ideal platform to demonstrate U.S. commitment to deepening our engagement with the continent at the highest levels. The Summit allowed us to explore new opportunities to expand partnerships in Africa’s public and private sectors and to discuss shared interests in democracy, good governance, and human rights. I was also pleased to see you, Secretary Blinken, and other members of your team interact with African leaders, including youth, civil society, and the diaspora, on a range of issues, including climate adaptation, multilateralism, and food security. My hope is that this Summit and related events occur more frequently, signaling a more consistent approach to our engagement strategy on the continent.
I support your pledge to commit $55 billion in foreign assistance to invest in Africa, with $15 billion dedicated to accelerating two-way trade, investment, and other commercial opportunities. In my conversations with African leaders on the Summit’s margins, I was often reminded of how much our partners value this type of American assistance. Making the transition from aid-dependent models to trade-focused relationships, where possible, resonates deeply with African governments that continue to see the United States as a preferred partner with shared values.
I also want to commend your staff, who performed exceptionally under dynamic circumstances. My special thanks to Dana Banks, Special Assistant to the President and National Security Council Special Advisor for the African Leaders Summit, for her extraordinary work and dedication in planning, organizing, and executing the Summit.
I look forward to working with Ambassador Carson’s soon-to-be-established office and my colleagues in Congress to advance Summit deliverables and the overall objectives of the U.S. Africa Strategy.
Gregory W. Meeks
The full text of the letter can be found here.