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Italy Announces $6 Bln Initial Investment Plan in Africa

Mon 29 Jan 2024 | 10:45 PM
Israa Farhan

Italy's Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni unveiled on Monday an ambitious development plan set to launch in Africa, with an initial value exceeding 5.5 billion euros (about $5.95 billion), including general guarantees for investment projects.

Meloni made these announcements at the outset of a one-day summit with African leaders. During the summit, ministers are expected to outline a series of initiatives spanning various sectors, ranging from energy and infrastructure to healthcare and education, which Meloni emphasized would be "beneficial for both parties."

At this summit, the "Mattie Plan" will be presented. It is named after Enrico Mattie, the founder of the oil company "Eni."

The plan will be presented to a group of leaders from Africa and Europe, including the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, according to the British newspaper "The Guardian."

Italy's move to focus on Africa comes shortly after Meloni's right-wing government assumed power in October 2022, with a primary goal of transforming Italy into an energy hub.

As the current chair of the Group of Seven (G7) this year, Italy has pledged to make African development a key focus during its presidency.

This commitment is driven, in part, by Italy's desire to expand its influence on the continent, where other global powers like China, Russia, Turkey, India, Japan have been increasing their political clout.