Amidst recent discussions about France’s role in Africa, French Foreign Trade Minister Olivier Becht has asserted that France is not retreating from the continent. In fact, he encourages French companies to strengthen their investments in Africa. This message comes ahead of his visit to Nigeria, emphasizing the importance of the economic partnership between France and African nations.
France’s Presence in Africa:
Contrary to some media claims, Becht affirms that France is not in decline in Africa. Nigeria, specifically, holds a significant position as “France’s leading trading partner in sub-Saharan Africa.” Approximately 100 French companies are actively engaged in the Nigerian market, showcasing the enduring economic ties between the two nations.
During his two-day trip to Nigeria, Becht plans to participate in the signing of several contracts, accompanied by a delegation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). He stresses the commitment of France to invest in various sectors, including mobility, education, and health infrastructures, demonstrating a holistic approach to development.
France’s Call to Action:
Becht urges French companies to maintain and increase their presence in Africa, emphasizing that this not only benefits the African continent and its countries but also contributes positively to the French economy. He believes that the growth of French SMEs relies on international engagement, positioning France as an active player in the global economic landscape.
Economic Influence Amidst Challenges:
nature of influence, stating that economic strength plays a pivotal role. With China and Russia expanding their
influence on the continent, Becht underscores France’s unique strengths, including producing high-quality
products meeting environmental standards and considering local populations, factors he suggests may not
always be prioritized by other global players.
France’s commitment to Africa is not wavering; instead, it is adapting to the changing dynamics of influence.
Through economic engagement, France aims to solidify its presence on the continent, addressing challenges
posed by other global powers. Olivier Becht’s message resonates with a vision of collaborative development,
emphasizing the mutual benefits that stem from sustained economic partnerships between France and African