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New U.S. Strategy for Africa Raises Questions

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken unveiled Washington's new Africa strategy at the University of Pretoria's Future Africa Campus in Pretoria, on August 8, 2022. Andrew Harnik / POOL / AFP

Early headlines framed the United States’s new strategy towards Sub-Saharan Africa in terms of China and Russia, arguably because it’s difficult to get people in Washington and London to read anything about Africa without a New Cold War sweetener. 

In fact, the new strategy [PDF] actually marks a slight de-emphasis of China compared to its Trump-era predecessor, which put countering Chinese influence front and center. Overall, African policymakers will find reasons for cautious optimism that it signals a new willingness from the U.S. to cooperate on development issues like climate mitigation while somewhat dialing down the geopolitical pressure on the continent’s development cooperation with China.  

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