The European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has proposed a new alliance with Africa to deepen economic relations and boost investment and jobs.
The proposal could help create up to 10 million jobs in Africa in the next five years alone, Mr Juncker said.
The vision involves what he calls a “continent-to-continent” free-trade agreement.
It is part of the European Union plan to deepen ties with Africa to counter the growing influence of China.
Europe has a complicated message for Africa.
On the one hand, European Union leaders are still preoccupied by the challenge of uncontrolled immigration and its political consequences.
But increasingly, Europe is emulating China’s approach to Africa – focusing on trade, and on partnerships – not conflicts and charity.
“We have to stop seeing this relationship through the sole prism of development aid,” Mr Juncker acknowledged.
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