Strasbourg 15.12.2021 President Nana Akufo-Addo called for a more equal trade relationship with Europe that would empower African countries to build their economies and move beyond development aid. The Ghana leader addressed the Members of the European Parliament at the last calendar Plenary in Strasbourg on December 14.
During a formal sitting on Tuesday, Ghanaian President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo expressed his hope that the EU and the African Union can work on a joint strategy and define a new partnership. African countries should not be just a receiver of help from Europe, but they should sit side by side at the decision making table as equals.
He stressed that investing in Africa and helping it develop its economy would bring huge export opportunities for European companies. “We need to rely on ourselves and get rid of the image of beggars living on charity, aid and handouts, and make better and more intelligent use of our abundant national resources to pull ourselves out of poverty and into prosperity”, said President Akufo-Addo.
Talking about the COVID-19 pandemic, President Akufo-Addo noted that Africa has been caught in “vicious vaccine politics”. While stressing that Africa is grateful for vaccine donations through systems such as Covax, he pointed to the “unsavoury politics of vaccine nationalism” that could restrict access and potentially derail efforts to contain the pandemic.
On the subject of migration, President Akufo-Addo said that instead of investing money in preventing migrants from coming from Africa to Europe, funding would be better spent in supporting the African economy and encouraging people to stay at home by offering them economic opportunity.