You are here
Home > Global news > May’s mission to woo Africa after Brexit

May’s mission to woo Africa after Brexit

May’s mission to woo Africa after Brexit
Theresa Might possibly well in entrance of a union flag Image copyright AFP
Image caption On her dawdle to Africa, Theresa Might possibly well is hoping to promote what she describes as a “in point of fact International Britain”

The UK’s historical relationship with many African countries composed counts for something, however, as High Minister Theresa Might possibly well will earn on her dawdle to the continent, the UK vies for attention with higher economies offering higher riches.

Mrs Might possibly well is travelling to South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya this week on her first African check with as top minister as she appears to be like to be like to spice up Britain’s post-Brexit alternate.

Britain’s purpose after leaving the European Union in March next year is to “deepen and help its global partnerships”, Mrs Might possibly well said in an announcement.

“This week I’m taking a deem forward to discussing how we are able to achieve that alongside Africa to support bring crucial funding and jobs as successfully as proceed to work together to protect stability and safety.”

On the other hand it would possibly per chance additionally merely be a laborious promote.

Image copyright Michael Khateli

Image caption Chinese language loans financed Kenya’s recent railway linking the capital, Nairobi, to the flit. What is going to Britain be ready to produce?

The UK is introducing laws that ought to point out that African companies will web entry to the UK market on the identical terms as they attain now.

Nonetheless, African countries, quite a lot of them vulnerable British colonies, will must redefine their relationship with Britain in the wake of Brexit.

The continent’s leaders must come to a resolution who to prioritise: an ambitious however edifying China, the astronomical European Union bloc, the aptitude riches of the usa, or the historically-linked United Kingdom.

In 2015, total alternate (imports and exports blended) between Africa and the UK amounted to $36bn (£28bn), however that figure for the EU as a total used to be $305bn. In the identical year, alternate between China and Africa totalled $188bn, and between the US and Africa is amounted to $53bn.


Trade with Africa 2015

  • Africa-UK – $36bn
  • Africa-US – $53bn
  • Africa-China – $188bn
  • Africa-EU – $305bn

Sources: European Fee, McKinsey, UK Division for International Trade


To sweeten her offer, the highest minister is bringing along a delegation of 29 industry leaders to promote “the breadth and depth of British skills in skills, infrastructure, and financial and authentic companies,” Downing Avenue says.

First pause: South Africa

Mrs Might possibly well begins her dawdle to Africa in her country’s supreme buying and selling partner on the continent, South Africa, where she will be able to sit down with President Cyril Ramaphosa.

She’s going to consume a speech in Cape City on Tuesday to lay out her plans to partner with Africa using deepest sector alternate and funding after the United Kingdom leaves the EU.

“The UK has prolonged been a in point of fact crucial buying and selling partner for South Africa and without a doubt in the present financial native weather, where many South African companies are struggling, a form of entrepreneurs are taking a deem to the UK to elongate their reach,” Rachel Irvine, who runs a public relatives and marketing company, told the BBC.

She has as of late expanded her industry, Irvine Companions, in London and sees distinguished likely in the highest minister’s check with. Nonetheless she says that it’s in the slay about which country offers essentially the most easy deals.

‘We welcome each and each Mrs Might possibly well and the Chinese language, and esteem every other constructing financial system we are going to attain the industry that suits us simplest.”

The top minister’s dawdle comes a week before the astronomical Dialogue board on China-Africa Cooperation in Beijing. Dozens of African heads of utter are anticipated there and China would possibly per chance well per chance additionally merely offer recent alternate and finance deals.

The summit comes after, Chinese language President Xi Jinping’s second tour of Africa when he visited Senegal, Rwanda, Mauritius and South Africa.

Mrs Might possibly well’s dawdle appears to be like reasonably low key compared.

Second pause: Nigeria

The British top minister can be contrivance to meet Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja, ethical four months after they held talks in London.

Nigeria is Britain’s second supreme buying and selling partner in Africa, however need to composed the country be so targeted on the UK?

Tunji Andrews, an economist essentially based fully in Nigeria’s industrial hub Lagos, believes Nigeria need to composed focus extra on its relationship with the European Union.

“The amount of assign a question to of the EU market makes it a slight bit extra gorgeous.

“I specialise in it is never doable now not to see on the British market at this level, however I’m going to also snarl that while Britain remains a viable alternate partner, it ethical doesn’t protect the identical payment to Africa as China and to a lesser extent, the US.”

Nigeria’s top export to the UK is rude oil and its supreme import is sophisticated oil, a structural inefficiency that ends in abnormal gasoline shortages as the populous West African nation lacks a well functioning refinery.

Third pause: Kenya

Mrs Might possibly well concludes her maiden African dawdle in Kenya, turning into the first British top minister to check with the East African country in over 30 years.

The country re-exports about a of its merchandise to the EU thru the UK and there are concerns that a laborious Brexit would possibly per chance well per chance additionally jeopardise that.

Kenya’s alternate split between the UK and the remainder of the EU “is nearly 50-50 and the country will must strike a ethical deal with each and each the UK and the EU because it is dependent on each and each markets to promote its tea, recent create and other agricultural merchandise,” says economist Tony Watima.

Kenya offers extra roses to the European Union than another country and is the enviornment’s Zero.33 supreme exporter of in the reduction of flowers.

The country sends 17% of its flowers sold in the EU to the UK. With 500,000 individuals supported by the flower alternate, in step with the Kenya Flower Council, every market is excessive.

Nonetheless with utter flights from Nairobi to New York starting in October, the country would possibly per chance well per chance additionally merely be taking a deem to faucet into the upper US market for its goods.

President Uhuru Kenyatta will meet Mrs Might possibly well in Nairobi on Thursday ethical three days after discussing alternate with US President Donald Trump on the White Residence.

Image copyright AFP

Image caption Kenya can be fervent to protect its UK market for its roses, however other EU countries are also crucial possibilities

Total, there would possibly per chance be a sense that Africa is being wooed from many facets.

Mrs Might possibly well’s dawdle to the continent is allotment of her mission to envision a “in point of fact International Britain”. She goes with the hope of offering a recent partnership by which every and each the UK and Africa can wait on, however there are those who desire the continent to force a laborious slash price.

“Markets are global, why need to composed Africa must rep ethical one?” asks South African businesswoman Rachel Irvine.

“It is therefore decidedly in the fervour of every and each parties to play fine with every other.”

Read More

Leave a Reply

Top