1. At the invitation of His Excellency Barack Obama, His Excellency President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika travelled to the United States of America to attend the US-Africa Leaders’ Summit, which was held in Washington D.C., from 4th to 6th August, 2014. The aim of the Summit was to explore ways of fostering stronger cooperation between the United States of America and Africa. His Excellency the President was accompanied by Her Excellency Mrs. Gertrude Mutharika, First Lady, and some Cabinet Ministers, senior officials from Government and the private Sector.

2. His Excellency the President attended a number of events on the sidelines of the Summit. Her Excellency the First Lady also attended a number of meetings.

OUTCOME OF THE US-AFRICA LEADERS’ SUMMIT

3. The US-Africa Leaders’ Summit was a historic opportunity to strengthen ties with African partners including Malawi. It was evident throughout the Summit, that America remains committed to investing in the continent’s most precious resource- people. The Summit’s theme “Investing in the Next Generation” reflected a common ambition of developing Malawi, and leaves it better for future generations, by making concrete progress on good governance, economic development, and peace and security.

4. President Obama has pursued a number of signature initiatives in Africa. Malawi is among the few countries on the continent of Africa, that will continue to benefit from nearly all of those initiatives, that include:-
• The 350 Million Dollars Millennium Challenge Corporation power sector compact;
• President Obama’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) with 100 million dollars investment, just this year;
• The President’s Malaria Initiative;
• The Global Climate Change Initiative;
• Feed the future, which is working in nine districts in Malawi, promoting crop diversification, nutrition and value chain. The Malawi Government also committed during the Summit to pursuing climate smart agriculture;
• New Alliance for
Food Security and Nutrition, which is a framework with government, private sector and donors, to increase investment in agriculture; and
• The Young African Leaders Initiative, with 18 young Malawian leaders already having benefitted from the initiative.

5. President Obama pledged to renew and improve upon the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and improve the capacity for African nations, to increase trade among themselves. He was particularly interested in promoting education and opportunities for women and girls. This is evidenced by Malawi’s participation in the African Women Entrepreneurship Program (AWEP), and by the significant U.S. investment in primary education sector.

SIGNATURE EVENTS AT THE US-AFRICA LEADERS’ SUMMIT

African Leaders and President Obama engaged in dialogue in three action-orientated sessions that addressed issues of shared interest and mutual concern.

LEADERS SESSION I- INVESTING IN AFRICA’S FUTURE

The opening session discussed inclusive, sustainable development, economic growth and investment. During the session the U.S. Government announced a renewed commitment to the Power Africa initiative. The U.S. Government pledged a new level of 300 million US Dollars, in assistance per year, to expand the reach of Power Africa, across the continent. This is in pursuit of a new aggregate goal of 30,000 Mega Watts of additional capacity to Africa, and increasing electricity access, by at least 60 million household and business connections. President Obama also announced 6 billion US Dollars, in new private sector commitments, bringing the total private sector commitments under Power Africa, to date, to more than 20 billion dollars.

LEADERS SESSION II- PEACE AND REGIONAL STABILITY

The second session centered around shared concerns regarding peace and security, including a discussion of long-term solutions to regional conflicts, peace keeping challenges, and combating transnational threats. The United States made a commitment to launch a new Security Governance Initiative, to help African countries continue to build strong, professional security forces, to provide for their own security. The first group of countries includes Kenya, Niger, Mali, Nigeria, Ghana and Tunisia.

During the discussions, the West African leaders made it clear that they want to increase their capacity to respond to crises. Therefore, the United States will launch a new effort to bolster the regions early warning and response network, and increase their ability to share information about emerging crises. The U.S. also undertook to make significant new investments in African peacekeeping. It will provide additional equipment to African peacekeepers in Somalia, and the Central African Republic. It will support the African Union’s efforts to strengthen its peacekeeping institutions. And most importantly, the Obama Administration is launching a new African peacekeeping rapid response partnership with the goal of quickly deploying African peacekeepers in support of U.N. or AU missions.

The U.S. Government also pledged to expand security cooperation with African nations in order to address threats from terrorism and human trafficking.

• LEADERS SESSION III- GOVERNING FOR THE NEXT GENERATION

The concluding Session discussed the greatest challenges and opportunities for Africa’s continued political and economic progress and a specific focus on governance. The dialogue was an opportunity to highlight the importance of rule of law, open and accountable institutions, strong civil societies, and protection of human rights for all citizens and all communities. In particular, leaders agreed to enhance their collective efforts against corruption. Several leaders raised the idea of a new partnership, to combat illicit finance, and there was widespread agreement. The Leaders decided to convene experts and develop an action plan, to promote the transparency that is essential to economic growth.

OTHER MAJOR EVENTS
1. THE CONGRESSIONAL RECEPTION AND CEO DINNER

On 4th August, 2014, His Excellency President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika attended a Congressional Welcome Reception. Organized by the Senate Foreign Relations and House Foreign Affairs Committees. It was also attended by Members of Congress and a contingent of Malawian business captains. The U.S. Department of State organized dinners between African Heads of State and Government, and Chief Executive Officers (CEOs), on 4th August, 2014.

2. US-AFRICA BUSINESS FORUM

On 5th August, 2014, the U.S. Department of Commerce and Bloomberg Philanthropies co-hosted the first U.S. Africa Business Forum, a day focused on strengthening trade and financial ties between the U.S. and Africa. President Obama participated in the Business Forum, along with Secretary Pritzker and Mayor Bloomberg. The critical issues discussed at the Forum, included, expanding trade between Africa and the U.S.; engaging the youth through the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI); promotion of inclusive and sustainable development; expanding cooperation on peace and security; and creation of a better future for Africa. To promote U.S. industry engagement in Africa, the Commerce Department has created a one stop shop web portal, where Americans can learn about African markets, find financing tools and discover potential projects, contacts and resources.

In his address to the Business Forum, His Excellency President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika, shared with the business captains, information on trade and investment opportunities available in Malawi. He called on the U.S. private sector, to invest in Malawi, considering that the Malawi Government has put in place, pro-business policies aimed at supporting trade and investment in Malawi. The President invited the U.S. private sector, to exploit business opportunities in the Green Belt Initiative, that offer comprehensive investment opportunities in technology development, irrigation, supply of equipment, tools and machinery, energy and industrial development, health sector, education sector, transport and communication infrastructure, mineral and other natural resources development, and tourism, among others. The issue of energy was paramount because there is a huge gap between demand and supply for energy and most of the companies cannot invest in Malawi because of inadequate energy supply.

The President further informed the business captains that the development of highly potential transport projects with regional outreach such as the Shire-Zambezi Waterway, brings with it prospects for investment in warehousing, railway and road transport infrastructure development, shops, hotel and other tourism opportunities.
The President also highlighted other benefits that exist in trading with Malawi, due to its links with the SADC and COMESA countries, as well as the prevailing peace and security.

3. WHITE HOUSE DINNER

On 5th August, 2014, His Excellency the President and Her Excellency Madame Gertrude Mutharika, First Lady of the Republic of Malawi, attended a White House Dinner, hosted in honour of African Heads of State and Government by President and Mrs. Obama.
In his remarks at the White House Dinner, President Barack Obama echoed his close ties with the dynamic continent. He finally offered a toast to “the new Africa, the Africa that is rising and so full of promise”.

4. RESILIENCE AND FOOD SECURITY IN A CHANGING CLIMATE

On 4th August, 2014, His Excellency the President attended a session on Resilience and Food Security in a Changing Climate. During the session, the United States and African countries reaffirmed their shared commitment to tackling together the challenges of climate change and poverty and to partnering to build resilience to these kinds of shocks. They also stressed their commitment to promoting low-carbon economic development and clean energy access on the African continent. Components of this cooperative approach included The Global Resilience Partnership.

At the Summit, USAID and the Rockefeller Foundation announced a 100 million US dollars Global Resilience Partnership to help protect the lives and livelihoods of the world’s most vulnerable people. The Partnership will focus its efforts in three regions, with historically high vulnerability to recurrent shocks — the Sahel, Horn of Africa, and South and Southeast Africa — and build on work already being carried out by USAID, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development in East Africa, and Economic Community of West African States.

5. PRIVATE BREAKFAST DISCUSSION HOSTED BY THE UNITED STATES AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION (USADF) PRESIDENT AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, MS. SHARI BEREABACH

On 7th August, His Excellency the President attended a breakfast discussion, organized by Shari Beresback, the President and Chief Executive Officer of the United States African Development Foundation (USADF). The President expressed Malawi’s gratitude for their interest to invest in Malawi, in promoting the development, competitiveness and profitability of small-scale agricultural producer groups, cooperatives and associations and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), in export trade and investment.

Ms. Shari Beresbach pledged the Foundations continued support to Malawi. USADF is also ready to provide support for Malawi’s development, in the area of youth empowerment.

Ms. Shari Beresbach further indicated that during the five- year period from 2008-2013, the program funded a total of 18 enterprises with investments totaling over MK 615 million. USADF contributed MK 330 million and the Government of Malawi contributed MK 285 million. The agricultural investments include dairy, rice, cassava, coffee, soya and beans. As a result 13, 389 people earned incomes from the supported economic activities; 3,229 new members joined supported cooperatives and enterprises and 493 formal jobs were supported.
In addition, the five coffee coopera
tives and the chilli pepper investment exported products worth MK 539 million. Malawi’s coffee products received best coffee awards at a coffee exhibition in Japan, and Malawi coffee has been put on the Starbucks reserve, signaling that the country has one of the finest beverages in the world.

MEETINGS ON THE SIDELINES OF THE SUMMIT
MEETING WITH MR. GEORGE SOROS, INVESTOR PHILANTHROPIST AND CHAIRMAN OF SOROS FUND MANAGEMENT

His Excellency President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika had a meeting with Mr. George Soros, a business magnate, investor philanthropist and Chairman of Soros Fund Management. Mr. Soros offered to provide expertise in areas that include early childhood development, maternal health, housing, financial management, management of extractive industries, and natural resources governance.
In response, His Excellency the President expressed appreciation for the assistance Mr. Soros’ organizations have rendered to Malawi, since 2002. He cited the assistance rendered by the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA), for funding the Presidential debates before the 20th May elections. His Excellency the President also outlined his administration’s programmes.

With regard to the provision of subsidized farm inputs, Mr. Soros indicated that there is a possibility of finding a company to manufacture fertilizers in Malawi
Mr. Soros informed His Excellency the President that he can avail the service of Professor Paul Collier, one of the most distinguished Development Economist to assist in formulating any sectoral development strategy that Government may require.
His Excellency the President invited Mr. George Soros to visit Malawi.

AUDIENCE WITH VICE PRESIDENT OF THE WORLD BANK, MR. MAKHATAR DIOP

The Vice President of the World Bank, Mr. Makhatar Diop, paid a courtesy call on His Excellency President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika, and informed him some of the development cooperation programmes that the Bank is undertaking in Malawi, including support in education, information technology, human capacity development, infrastructure development and the health sector. The World Bank reaffirmed its commitment towards Malawi Governments agenda, in the areas of agriculture diversification, mining and energy, economic base diversification, and will liaise with other donor partners to resume budget support.

MEETING WITH THE DEPUTY SECRETARY OF STATE FOR MANAGEMENT AND RESOURCES, MS. HEATHER HIGGINBOTTOM

His Excellency the President met with Ms. Heather Higginbottom, Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources. His Excellency the President also highlighted his vision of empowering the youth.

Ms. Higginbottom pledged support towards the establishment of community colleges in Malawi, and reaffirmed commitment to increase assistance in health.

AUDIENCE WITH MS. ELIZABETH L. LITTLEFIELD, THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER OF THE OVERSEAS PRIVATE INVESTMENT CORPORATION

The Chief Executive Officer of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), Ms. Elizabeth L. Littlefield, paid a courtesy call on His Excellency the President.
OPIC bemoaned low absorption capacity of Malawi in utilizing loan facilities of the institution. OPIC reported that it has extended loans amounting to US$5 billion in Africa, with only 130 thousand Dollars going to Malawi. She called for more aggressive approach by Malawian project promoters, to take advantage of OPIC facilities. OPIC further requested the Malawi Government to sort out capacity issues at the Malawi Investment and Trade Centre (MITC), for the good of private capital inflow into Malawi.

MEETING WITH THE MALAWIAN SOCIETY IN THE WASHINGTON METRO AREA

His Excellency President Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika met with the Malawians resident in the Washington metro area, on 7th August, 2014, and briefed the audience on the priorities by the DPP Government administration has indentified to stimulate economic growth and attain sustainable and inclusive development. He highlighted trade, investment, infrastructure and energy development, as key to economic growth in Malawi, and encouraged Malawians in the diaspora to consider investing in these areas. He also briefed the audience on the purposes of the U.S. –Africa Leaders’ Summit.
The President encouraged the diaspora, to invest in Malawi, and that his government has set up a Diaspora Unit at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. On their part, Malawians in the Washington metro area raised issues with regard to dual citizenship, among others.

AUDIENCE WITH MR. NATHAN KALUMBU, PRESIDENT OF THE COCA-COLA EURO ASIA AND AFRICA GROUP

His Excellency the President held a meeting with Mr. Nathan Kalumbu, President of Coca-Cola Euro Asia and Africa Group. Coca- Cola has indicated that:

They will invest US$30 million in 2015 in a bottling plant in Blantyre and committed to expand the range of their products, to include fruit juices, and other related products; and committed $3 million in the expansion of their corporate social responsibility, focusing on water, health, sanitation and the general environment.
His Excellency the President committed to provide a continued enabling environment for their investment.

AUDIENCE WITH THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER OF SYMBION POWER, MR. PAUL HINKS
His Excellency the President had an audience with Mr. Paul Hinks, the Chief Executive Officer of Symbion Power. Mr. Hinks outlined his company’s proposed investment in biomass power generation in Malawi, to generate 5 megawatts in the rural areas of Malawi, using bamboos. The meeting agreed to continue discussions of the project as it is key to Malawi’s economic development. Symbion Power will be setting up a project office in Malawi. The Chief Executive of Symbion Power will visit Malawi next month.

MEETING WITH MR. KAMRAN KHAN, VICE PRESIDENT OF COMPACT OPERATIONS OF THE MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORPORATION (MCC)

His Excellency the President, delegated Hon. Atupele Muluzi, M.P., Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining to attend a meeting with officials of Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), to review progress on the implementation of the MCC Malawi Compact. Both parties were satisfied with the progress of implementation of the Compact so far.
HER EXCELLENCY THE FIRST LADY’S EVENTS ON THE MARGINS OF THE US-AFRICA LEADERS’ SUMMIT
On the margins of the US-Africa Leaders Forum, Her Excellency First Lady Madam Gertrude Mutharika, performed a few engagements as follows:

i. MEETING WITH MALAWIAN WOMEN LIVING IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

On 3rd August, 2014, Her Excellency the First Lady held a meeting with Malawian Women living in the U.S.

Her Excellency shared her concern on the situation of girls in Malawi, who fail to complete their education, due to poverty and other challenges. She highlighted measures set up by Government to ensure that girls stay in school and complete their education.
She expressed her passion for environment issues, and specifically waste management. In this regard, she announced her establishment of the Gertrude Mutharika Beautify Malawi Trust, which would promote hygiene practices through proper waste disposal and recycling of waste.
Malawian women living in the U.S. pledged to work together with Her Excellency the First Lady for the success of the Trust.

ii. BRUNCH AT THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AFRICAN ARTS
On 5th August, 2014, Her Excellency the First Lady attended brunch with leading African Women at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. The brunch gave opportunity for the African First Ladies to interact socially with American women on issues surrounding preservation of African culture. First Ladies were called upon to bring articles that define the culture of their respective countries, for them to be displayed in the Museum.

iii. MEETING WITH WOMEN’S GLOBAL INITIATIVE

Her Excellency the First Lady had a meeting with representatives of Women’s Global Initiative on Tuesday, 5th August, 2014. The group expressed interest in establishing a relationship with Malawi, though Her Excellency the First Lady in uplifting the women in business, education and environment concerns.

Her Excellency the First Lady explained the cervical cancer situation among women in Malawi and the lack on specialists and cancer centres. The representatives assured Her Excellency the First Lady that they will assist Malawi through her office.

iv. THE US-AFRICA LEADERS SPOUSES SUMMIT
Her Excellency First Lady Madam Gertrude Mutharika, attended the US-Africa Leaders Spouses Summit on 6th August, 2014 at the J.F. Kennedy Center. The Summit was hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama, who partnered with former First Lady Laura Bush and the Bush Institute. The theme of the Summit was “Investing in Our Future”. This was a symposium on advancement for women and girls in Africa. The symposium focused on the impact of investments in education, health, and public-private partnerships. During the Summit, President George W. Bush, who was in attendance, delivered remarks at the event. He announced the expansion of the Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon® initiative. President Bush stressed the important role of national leadership, including that of a First Spouse, in galvanizing a country to make the fight against women’s cancers a priority.

The symposium focused on the impact of investments in education, health, and economic development through public-private partnerships. It also included the announcement of more than US$200 million in investments to support programs fostering improved education, health, and economic opportunity for more than 1 million Africans across the continent.
Some of the announcements included:

• The U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), in partnership with the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF), launched Accelerating Children’s HIV/AIDS Treatment (ACT). ACT is an ambitious US$200 million initiative (US$150 million from PEPFAR and up to $50 million from CIFF) to double the total number of children receiving life-saving antiretroviral therapy (ART) across ten priority African countries over the next two years. This will enable 300,000 more children to receive ART.

• Caterpillar Foundation announced a partnership with the U.S. Department of State’s African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program (AWEP) to create the first ever AWEP-Women’s Entrepreneurial Centers of Resources, Education, Access, and Training for Economic Empowerment (WECREATE) in sub-Saharan Africa. Caterpillar Foundation and the U.S. State Department are providing $1 million each to create these self-sustaining women’s business centers where women can gain the tools, resources, support and education they need to become successful entrepreneurs and exporters. By being in control of their own financial destiny, women helped by the Centers will help to end the cycle of poverty faced by many girls and women in developing countries and catalyze economic development, prosperity and job creation in their respective countries.

• The MasterCard Foundation announced that nearly 6,000 of the 15,000 students it has pledged to support with The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program, predominantly from Africa, will be enrolled in high school and university by December 2014. By the end of the 10-year initiative, 75% of the Scholars will be girls and young women.
CONCLUSION

The convening of the US-Africa Leaders’ Summit presented an opportunity for the establishment of mutually beneficial cooperation between the U.S. and Africa. The U.S. and Malawian Government are already beginning to follow up on a number of action items that transpired out of the discussions, business meetings and announcements.
Thank you for your attention.

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