Paris, 3 March 2023 (TDI): President of France, Emmanuel Macron traveled to Central Africa on Wednesday in a diplomatic drive to start a new “responsible relationship” with the African Nations.
During the tour, President Emmanuel Macron will visit Gabon, Angola, the Republic of Congo, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Ahead of the visit, on Monday French President Macron called for “a mutual and responsible relationship” with the continent, as anti-French sentiments run high in some former colonies.
He pledged to break with former post-colonial policies. He also added that in the coming months, France will reduce its military footprints in the continent, and promote democracy and economic partnership in the region.
One Forest Summit in Gabon
On Wednesday, President Macron landed in Gabon, where he attended the One Forest Summit and co-host the conference along with Gabonese President Ali Bongo.
The One Forest Summit focused on the preservation and scientific research in the Congo Basin, which is the second largest rainforest after Amazon that sink carbon emission.
They are also home to huge biodiversity including forest elephants and gorillas and bear traces of the settlement of early humanity.
But they face threats such as poaching, deforestation for the oil palm and rubber industries, and illegal logging and mineral exploitation.
On Friday, the French President will travel to Angola, where he will set to sign an accord to develop the agriculture sector as a part of to drive to enhance French ties with Angola’s former colony of Portugal.
Strengthening agriculture ties with Angola
In Angola, three French companies also expressed their desire in extending their investments in the farming industry, aiming to support the process of increasing food production in Angola.
Bilateral cooperation between Angola and France dates back to 1982 and this is the fourth time that a French President has visited Angola. The last visit of a French statesman to Angola happened in July 2015, by former President François Hollande.
After completing the visit to Angola, President Emmanuel Macron will travel to the Republic of Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday.
Where he will deepen the French ties with both Central African Countries in the fields of Science, Education, Health, Research, Culture, and Defense.
However, the French President’s visit to the African Nation has erupted anti-French rallies in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Gabon, where the opposition denounced the French President’s visit ahead of elections in both countries.