CAPE TOWN, (Xinhua) --
British Prime Minister Theresa May pledged on
Tuesday that her country will become the G7’s biggest investor
in Africa by 2022.
The United Kingdom
(UK) will use its development budget to not only relieve
poverty, but to create a sustainable investment environment for
British businesses in Africa, May told guests of the British
High Commission in Cape Town.
May was on a working
visit to South Africa, the first leg of her first three-nation
tour of the African continent. She will meet with South African
President Cyril Ramaphosa later Tuesday.
May said the UK will
invest up to £4bn (about 5.2 billion U.S. dollars) in Africa,
with a special focus on creating jobs for young people.
With 60-percent of
Africans under the age of 25, the young population could enrich
the world economy, but needed to be properly harnessed, she
“Africa will have to
create 18 million new jobs to keep pace with its rapidly growing
populations,” May said.
It’s in the world’s
interest to see that those jobs are created, she added.
“If we fail to do
so, the economic and environmental impact will soon reach every
corner of the world,” May warned.
The Prime Minister
also voiced support for South Africa’s controversial land
reform, characterized by land expropriation without
The UK supports land
reform that is legal and transparent and generated through a
democratic process, May said.
Parliament is currently in a process to amend the Constitution
to cater for land expropriation without compensation. The move
has met with opposition. Last week, U.S. President Donald Trump
added his voice to the chorus of opposition.
approach to land reform could potentially unlock further
investment opportunities in Africa, May said.
May said she and
Ramaphosa discussed the land reform during his visit to Britain
earlier this year and will discuss it with him during her visit.
pledged to pursue the land reform in a legal way that will not
hamper agriculture production and food security.
May welcomed the
comments that Ramaphosa has already made, bearing in mind the
economic and social aspects of it.
“I think he’s made
some comments that it won’t be a smash and grab approach. I
think there’s an opportunity to unlock investment,” May said.
May visits Africa to forge
trade ties for post-Brexit Britain
LONDON, (Xinhua) --
British Prime Minister Theresa May will fly to
sub-Saharan Africa late Monday for the first time in order to
forge new trade links for post-Brexit Britain.
May becomes the
first British leader to visit sub-Saharan Africa in five years,
making a three-day trip that includes meetings with the
presidents of South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya.
The prime minister
will bring a trade delegation with her in an attempt to boost
Britain’s post-Brexit export prospects, although her visit comes
at a time when the British government has been accused of a
paying insufficient attention to the region.
The last time a
British prime minister visited sub-Saharan Africa was in
December 2013 when David Cameron attended Nelson Mandela’s
May has never
visited sub-Saharan Africa. Her only previous trip to the
continent was a visit to Tunisia in 2015 in the aftermath of the
Sousse hotel terror attack.
Speaking ahead of
her flight to South Africa on Monday evening, the prime minister
said, “Africa stands right on the cusp of playing a
transformative role in the global economy” and that “a more
prosperous, growing and trading Africa is in all of our