Washington, D.C. - Tom Hart, US Executive Director of ONE, issued the following statement on the Presidential Policy Directive outlining a new strategy toward sub-Saharan Africa that aims to strengthen democratic institutions and spur economic growth, trade and investment as well as advance peace and security and promote opportunity and development on the continent:
“We applaud the President for his leadership on these issues at a critical time for Africa’s growth. We hope this new directive will help drive awareness of the incredible opportunities to invest in Africa, as well as underscore the need for transparent and accountable development in partnership with African leadership.
“Africa’s vast oil and mineral reserves offer a rare opportunity to generate revenues for investment in health, education, roads, and power grids, as well as in agriculture and food security. If we can get the development of these natural resources right, then countless numbers can be lifted out of poverty. And properly managed, these resources will help all of us in the global economy. But, the SEC is more than a year late in producing a rule to implement a specific provision within the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 that would bring much needed transparency to the most lucrative, and yet most corrupt, sector of African economies. We are eager to see how the forthcoming SEC rules will reflect the spirit of empowerment and transparency set forth by Obama in his new Africa policy.
“Along with the great economic promise of Africa, we also can’t take our eyes off the opportunity to bring about the beginning of the end of AIDS and to help lift 50 million people out of poverty through sustainable agriculture programs. In order to break the cycle of poverty for good, donor governments, African governments, and the private sector all need to come together as one.”