(Parsippany, New Jersey) – 07 August 2018 – Paul Sullivan, Senior Vice President – International at Acrow Bridge, a leading international bridge engineering and supply company, recently participated in a trade mission to Africa organized by the US Department of Commerce and the President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa (PAC-BDIA), which advises the President on ways to strengthen commercial engagement between the US and Africa. Led by Wilbur Ross, US Secretary of Commerce, and Gilbert B. Kaplan, Under Secretary for International Trade, delegates included representatives from 11 US government agencies and 23 PAC-DBIA businesses. The trip, which included stops in Ethiopia, Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, began on June 24 and concluded on July 6.
Africa is one of the largest potential markets for US export growth. According to McKinsey & Company research, by 2025 the continent will present an estimated $5.6 trillion in opportunities and will account for one-fifth of the world’s population. Members of the fact-finding mission prioritized the four nations visited based on the possibility of advancing US trade relationships with each. Meetings with local governments and businesses focused on building country-specific trade relationships and fostering investment on the continent, as well as local workforce development.
Secretary Ross stated, “The United States is making real progress in Africa, and we remain a strong, long-term, and stable partner in the continent’s economic development. It’s clear US companies want to grow their businesses in Africa, and these countries can facilitate that by improving their business climates, thereby enabling the growth of the digital economy, agriculture, health care, energy, manufacturing, and service sectors. We are finding solutions to transition aid-based economies to trade-based economies by creating new pathways for mutually beneficial long-term partnerships.”
Sullivan, who is a frequent speaker at international development conferences, added, “Africa’s ongoing economic growth and development present many opportunities for American companies of all sizes. Strong collaboration between the public and private sectors in the US and Africa is crucial in creating new market opportunities for US companies. It was an honor to have been a member of this group so committed to Africa’s development.”
During the trip, cooperation agreements were signed with each country for priority projects aimed at achieving long-term growth and development, which will be shared with US companies relevant to each. At the completion of the trip, Secretary Ross announced that over $1 billion in private-sector deals had been concluded during the mission, and it was expected that more than $2 billion in additional deals would be announced shortly thereafter by PAC-DBIA members.
Among Sullivan’s co-delegates were representatives from GE, Caterpillar, Dow Chemical, UPS, IBM and Bechtel.
About Acrow Bridge
Acrow Bridge has been serving the transportation and construction industries for more than 60 years with a full line of modular steel bridging solutions for vehicle, rail, vessel, military and pedestrian use. Acrow’s extensive international presence includes its leadership in the development and implementation of bridge infrastructure projects in over 80 countries, covering Africa, Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, please visit www.acrow.com.