President Sirleaf and U.S. Ambassador Malac Rap on Upcoming U.S-Africa

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has said the upcoming U.S-Africa Leaders’ Summit is an opportunity for Africa to initiate further investment into the continent’s future generation.

Addressing a joint press conference with U.S. Ambassador Deborah Malac in the Foyer of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Tuesday, July 29, President Sirleaf suggested that African leaders seize this opportunity to open Africa to the U.S. by explaining its emerging potential in global trade.

The Liberian leader said by this, Africa’s partners at the up-coming meeting in the U.S. capital, Washington D.C., will appreciate the continent’s quest to secure a brighter future for their children.

President Sirleaf expressed the hope that the two-day meeting will further enhance trade between Africa and the U.S. and encourage more American investment in Africa which she believes will lead to job creation for the young population.

According to an Executive Mansion press release issued here Tuesday, President Sirleaf also expressed the hope that African leaders will use the forum to explore more avenues where an intra-Africa trade mechanism at a larger scale would be established to buttress already existing trade links on the continent.

On Peace and Security, the Liberian leader expressed the hope that Liberia will exchange its success story with the U.S. about its peacekeeping involvement as part of the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali.

According to the release, President Sirleaf hopes to use the gathering to encourage the U.S. to continue to support the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) and also to support an initiative by Africa to have a rapid response peacekeeping force to promote the fast growing democracies on the continent.

Speaking earlier, U.S. Ambassador Deborah Malac said President Barrack Obama sees Africa as a fundamental part of U.S. interconnected world.

According to Ambassador Malac, President Obama believes the partnership must be grounded in mutual responsibility and respect.

Ambassador Malac said her country shares an already close relationship with Liberia built on shared history and common goal for peace and democracy and said the conference will give both countries the opportunity to strengthen those goals by building regional and continental understanding and cooperation.

“As we are seeing with this tragic outbreak of the Ebola Viral Disease, there are many issues that can only be addressed on regional basis to bring those issues to successful conclusion,” Ambassador Malac said.

Ambassador Malac recommitted the U.S Government’s position that they stand ready to work with Liberia and the other countries in the region in making sure that all enjoy a prosperous and healthy future.

Discussions at the pending summit on how to encourage progress in key areas that Africans define as critical for the future of the continent include expanding trade and investment ties, engaging young African leaders, promoting inclusive sustainable development, expanding cooperation on peace and security, and gaining a better future for Africa’s next generation.

The United States–Africa Leaders’ Summit slated for August 5-6 in Washington DC is the largest event any US President has held with African Heads of State and Government.

It is expected to strengthen ties between the U.S. and what they refer to as one of the world’s most dynamic and fastest growing regions. The theme of the Summit is “Investing in the Next Generation.”

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