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Trump’s top diplomat focuses on trade and investment on first day in Cameroon Updated for 2021


Updated: February 25, 2021

The United States Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of African Affairs, Mr. Tibor Nagy, has arrived Cameroon on a two-day visit. It is his fourth and final stop on a four-nation tour of Africa that has also included visits to Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

On his first day in Cameroon, Secretary Nagy visited Crelicam, an ebony processor owned by American guitar maker Taylor Guitars.

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“This partnership responsibly harvests ebony and shows how U.S.-Cameroon trade can improve the economies of both our countries while also helping the environment,” the United States Embassy in Cameroon tweeted.

Secretary Nagy also met with the American Chamber of Commerce in Douala to discuss trade and investment between the United States and Cameroon.

“Participants highlighted Cameroon’s great economic potential and suggested ways to improve the business climate,” the U.S. Embassy said.

While things might have been smooth in Douala, Cameroon’s economic hub, in Yaounde, the capital on Monday, President Trump’s diplomat would need to confront social issues with President Paul Biya.

Cameroon, long described as one of the most stable countries in central Africa, has been embroiled in a regional war against Boko Haram terrorists since 2014, and an internal conflict between the central government and Anglophone separatists in the Northwest and Southwest regions since late 2016.

President Paul Biya of Cameroon

Nagy’s visit comes days after the State Department released its 2018 human rights report, and concluded that gross violations continue to occur in Cameroon.

As Boko Haram terrorists massacre civilians in Cameroon, security forces also often engage in extrajudicial killings in the country’s far north where the conflict continues to rage.

It is the same situation in dealing with Anglophone separatists. Both sides, in order to advance their own agendas, often end up using excessive force, including killing and kidnapping innocent civilians.

In a telephonic press briefing from Kigali in Rwanda early last week, Mr Nagy called for dialogue in Cameroon to stop the more than two years of bloodshed. “My heart breaks” about Cameroon, he told reporters.

Secretary Nagy’s visit, officials in Washington D.C. say, aims at advancing the constructive partnership the United States and Cameroon have enjoyed since the establishment of bilateral relations in 1960 when the central African nation gained independence from France.

Both governments would reaffirm the desire to work together to eradicate terrorism and piracy, promote regional security and stability, and advance economic growth and environmental protection.

 While in Cameroon, Assistant Secretary Nagy’s activities will include meetings with Cameroonian government officials and a visit to a U.S. company that has a presence there.

Both nations have been collaborating over the years on an increasingly diverse range of issues that are of enduring importance to both nations and the entire continent.


Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba covers the White House, the U.S. government, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions for Today News Africa in Washington D.C. Simon can be reached on simonateba@todaynewsafrica.com


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