“Africa’s economic transition depends on good government, healthy populations, and reliable and affordable energy. These things business seeks out when they’re looking to invest. They attract new opportunities, and they launch new partnerships. And the United States is committed to supporting every aspect — every aspect of Africa’s inclusive growth and creating the best possible environment for sustained commercial engagement between African companies and American companies. The United States is all in on Africa’s future.”President Joe Biden, December 14, 2022
For thirty years, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has been at the forefront of infrastructure development across Africa. USTDA is leveraging this experience to help shape the future of infrastructure across the continent, working in equal partnership with Africa’s public and private sectors and U.S. industry.
USTDA’s grant funding for project preparation activities, including feasibility studies and technical assistance, helps define technical requirements, attract financing, and support the use of U.S. technologies and services in Africa’s priority infrastructure projects. The Agency also connects overseas project sponsors with U.S. partners through its reverse trade missions, industry conferences and expert workshops.
In carrying out its mission, USTDA places particular emphasis on vital economic sectors including clean energy, transportation, digital, and healthcare infrastructure. USTDA’s current Africa portfolio consists of 80 ongoing infrastructure development activities in 26 countries. These have the potential to help unlock more than $15 billion in financing and create more than $7 billion in U.S. export opportunities.
On the occasion of the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, USTDA has announced the following new commitments to advance Africa’s priority infrastructure projects:
Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) MOU: USTDA and DBSA entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to enhance collaboration on accelerating large-scale infrastructure development across Africa. This partnership will leverage USTDA’s project preparation expertise and DBSA’s resources and strategic connections to ensure project bankability. The MOU outlines specific sub-sectors for cooperation on clean energy, digital, transportation, and healthcare infrastructure.
Africa50’s Alliance for Green Infrastructure Africa Fund: USTDA will dedicate resources toward joint project development with the Alliance for Green Infrastructure Africa Fund, which was recently launched by Africa50, the project preparation arm of the African Development Bank. This coordination of resources will accelerate Africa’s just and equitable transition to net-zero emissions through project preparation, development, and financing for green infrastructure in Africa.
Malawi Fixed Wireless and Fiber Access Network Expansion: USTDA awarded a feasibility study grant to Converged Technology Networks Limited, a Malawian internet service provider, to support the expansion of fixed wireless and fiber access networks across the country. This project will provide digital access for more than 800,000 people in underserved communities.
Africa Urban Internet Connectivity Expansion: A USTDA study for Poa Internet, a Nairobi-based internet service provider, will support the delivery of affordable fixed wireless internet access to one million African households in low-income urban communities across the continent.
Southern Africa Bridging the Digital Divide Reverse Trade Mission: In March 2023, USTDA will host a reverse trade mission to the United States, to connect public and private sector representatives from across Southern Africa with the latest U.S. technologies, services, and financing solutions for last-mile connectivity. The visit will support expanding internet access and accelerating digital transformation across the sub-region to bridge the digital divide.
Coalition for Healthcare Infrastructure in Africa: USTDA launched a new initiative with U.S. industry that will take a wholistic approach toward addressing Africa’s healthcare infrastructure priorities. The Coalition’s goals are to facilitate healthcare accessibility for the underserved, develop a sector that is resilient in the face of the greatest public health challenges, and provide more Africans with access to the highest-quality healthcare products. Launch projects include:
- Lily Urban Hospital Resuscitation: USTDA funded a feasibility study for the Nigerian private healthcare network Lily Hospitals Limited to support the acquisition, refurbishment, and operation of ten healthcare facilities. The study will recommend the most suitable facilities, business model, and financing for these facilities, which will serve up to 25,000 patients annually.
- Cedarcrest Comprehensive Cancer Treatment Center: USTDA funded a feasibility study for Cedarcrest Hospitals Limited, a Nigerian private health operator, to develop a comprehensive cancer treatment center in Abuja that will provide diagnosis and treatment services for up to 1,000 patients per year. The center will offer full-range oncology services to include prevention and screening, diagnostics, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, surgical oncology, and radiotherapy.
- Mobihealth Multi-Country Telehealth Expansion: USTDA funded a feasibility study for Nigeria’s Mobihealthcare Limited (Mobihealth) to support the expansion of its telehealth services from Nigeria to Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, and Egypt. USTDA’s study will include a detailed market assessment, financial analysis, and legal and regulatory assessment for each of the four countries. The Africa Investment Forum is collaborating with USTDA to facilitate the development and financing of Mobihealth’s project. This effort will help expand healthcare access for 100,000 individuals per year across Africa.
- Zipline Aerial Health and Distribution Service Expansion: USTDA funded a feasibility study for Fly Zipline Ghana Limited (Zipline) to expand healthcare access and related-sector logistics in Ghana and Nigeria using unmanned aerial vehicles. In addition to making healthcare more accessible and affordable, the project is anticipated to increase access to e-commerce, postal, and agricultural products and services in hard-to-reach areas, helping to stimulate local economies and reducing costs and time to access goods and services.
Africa Healthcare Regulatory Convergence Workshop Series: USTDA will host a five-part Africa Regulatory Convergence for Healthcare Products Workshop Series in 2023 that will support continental alignment with international standards and convergence of regulatory healthcare systems across Africa.
Healthcare Innovation Reverse Trade Mission Series: In August 2023, USTDA will bring a delegation of public and private healthcare institutions from Kenya and South Africa to the United States to meet with U.S. industry and government leaders and discuss U.S. best practices, solutions, and services in the healthcare sector.
CLEAN ENERGY/CLIMATE SMART INFRASTRUCTURE
South Africa Clean Energy and Climate Event Series: In support of the Just Energy Transition Partnership, USTDA is funding a series of four Clean Energy and Climate Infrastructure events over the next two years to promote cooperation between the U.S. and South African public and private sectors on clean energy development. The first event in the series took place in Cape Town, South Africa, and convened more than 90 key stakeholders to advance green hydrogen sector development in South Africa and identify market opportunities for U.S. companies.
Africa GreenCo Battery and Energy Storage System Pilot Project: USTDA approved funding for a feasibility study in Zambia that will support GreenCo Power Services Limited’s goal of developing a utility-scale battery energy storage technology project in Sesheke District, Zambia, and other potential sites. This project will reduce carbon emissions while providing more sustainability, resilience, and reliability to Zambia’s power grid.
Cotton Biomass Generation Project: USTDA approved funding for a technical assistance grant to help Ivoirian energy company Ecostar develop a cotton-stalk biomass power plant. The 25-megawatt facility will supply power to Cote d’Ivoire’s national grid by transforming agricultural waste from the country’s flourishing cotton sector.
Global Procurement Initiative: Virtual Procurement Training Series for the Transmission Company of Nigeria: In early 2023, USTDA’s Global Procurement Initiative will provide four virtual training sessions on procurement best practices for the Transmission Company of Nigeria and other officials from the Government of Nigeria.