Russia delivered two nuclear-capable bombers to South Africa on a training mission on October 23, a flight apparently timed to coincide with President Vladimir Putin’s opening of a flagship Russia-Africa Summit conceived to ensure Russian influence.
The two Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bombers landed at Waterkloof air force base in Tshwane on October 23, the South African National Defence Force announced.The Ministry of Defence of Russian Federation has said the mission is designed to nurture military ties with South Africa.
Addressing African heads of state at a two-day summit in the southern Russian city of Sochi, President Putin supported trade with African countries, foreseen to double over the next four to five years. Meanwhile Moscow had written off $20 billion of African debts.
The first Russia-Africa summit is part of a Kremlin strategy to win business and restore influence that faded after the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, which actively supported left-wing governments and movements across the continent during the period of the Cold War.
“Many Russian companies have long and successfully worked with partners from the most different sectors of the African economy and plan to expand their influence in Africa. We of course will provide support at the state level,” President Putin said.
Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov announced Russia-Africa Summit in Sochi on 23-24 October 2019.
African economies are currently striving to achieve inclusive growth and sustainable development – efforts which must be supported by constant technological progress. Today’s global technological landscape is becoming increasingly digital, opening up new opportunities to overcome challenges facing Africa and the entire world, such as famine, inequality, illiteracy, and disease.
Digital technologies are changing approaches to communication, leading to more effective governance and increased access to government services. Technology is bringing together solutions across a range of sectors to form comprehensive projects, while creating a single value-added growth chain and an integral mechanism for strengthening human capital – something which is vital for young African economies.
What technological solutions could help countries in Africa to accelerate growth in prosperity? What should be the starting point for implementing information and communications technology? Which areas would give the greatest rewards? What needs to be done to train personnel for this new technological wave?