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Sunday, December 2, 2007

'Africa no longer Europe's colony'

Fri, 30 Nov 2007 22:33:05

Europe must rid itself of the notion that Africa is still its own private domain, EU Development Commissioner Louis Michel has warned. EUDevelopment Commissioner,
Louis Michel

"Too often still in Europe, Afro-pessimism dominates,"
Michel told a conference in Brussels a week ahead of a landmark EU-Africa summit.

"African leaders are becoming more and more critical of Europe's old-fashioned thinking and we must clearly understand that Africa is no longer Europe's private hunting ground," said Michel, in a reference to the continent's colonial past.

"Europe is not alone in Africa and it will never again be alone in Africa," he added, alluding to growing influence of emerging powers, notably the United States, China, India and Brazil in the region.

Bilateral trade in Africa was 55.5 billion dollars last year, a ten-times growth compared to under a decade ago.

Michel concluded that the EU-Africa summit would be the ideal place to establish a real 'political partnership' so as to become players on 'the great African chessboard'.


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