U.N., Chinese groups team up to nurture African growth, infrastructure

A key branch of the United Nations will partner with two China-based global organizations to collaborate on building equitable, enduring socio-economic and industrial growth for the African continent, the entities said on Friday.

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) will work with the China Council for Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) and the China-Africa Development Fund (CAD Fund) to facilitate trade and financial prospects for Africa's developing nations.

Strengthening Africa’s competitiveness in the global market and supporting employment are among the initiative’s key goals. Together, UNIDO and CCPIT will perform research and arrange visits for Chinese specialists to become involved in new construction for African industrial parks, particularly in Ethiopia and Senegal, where a pilot UNIDO program is currently operating.

The three-way partnership represents the entities’ common goals to achieve sustainable development. UNIDO also signed a separate agreement with the CAD Fund promising mutual cooperation for industrial promotion on the continent, specifically covering air, rail and ground transportation; seaports; manufacturing; agriculture; food safety; small and medium enterprises (SMEs); investment, technology and infrastructure advances, and private-sector expansion.

Financed by the China Development Bank, the CAD Fund is a Chinese private equity fund -- the first of its kind to invest in Africa — with an emphasis on supporting power, transportation, natural resources and manufacturing, among other sectors.

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