France to invest €1bn in Africa’s private sector
The President France, Emmanuel Macron, has revealed plans to invest €1bn in Africa’s private sector.
Macron, who said he was passionate about the development of Africa at an interactive session with African entrepreneurs, organised by the Tony Elumelu Foundation in Lagos on Wednesday, said the investment would go a long way in transforming the economy.
According to him, if Africa fails, Europe and France will fail.
He said, “The unique way to succeed is to encourage private sector as this is a crucial way to achieve sustainable inclusive growth. When young people have access to jobs, then they have a chance at a better life, and the society has a chance at development.
“We need more Africans to succeed in Africa, and then we can start working on changing the mentality of other Europeans, and other continents, on having a positive mind towards Africa. We plan to gather a lot of players to build and develop the African private sector.”
He stated that as part of the commitment to the African private sector, he would be donating 70 per cent of the loans offered by TEF to entrepreneurs.
Macron, who signed an agreement with TEF for the loan, said he would also invest his time and funds in the education of African girls.
“African governments need to come together to work with the African Union to create a future for the young generation. They also need to deal with demography because if the trend of five to eight children per woman continues, poverty would never end. And if you ask these women, it is not their choice; it is as a result of decreased education and forced marriage,” he stated.
The French President, while advising entrepreneurs, urged them to embrace risks and not be scared of failure.
He advised them to stop attributing their failure to their nationality, saying, “Your nationality does not hinder your success. If you can succeed in Nigeria, you can succeed anywhere in the world.”