KIGALI, Rwanda

The European Commission head on Thursday announced a €150-billion ($172 billion) investment plan for Africa.

“I’m proud to announce plans for Africa, aiming to amass at least €150 billion in investment,” Ursula Von der Leyen told a news conference in the Senegalese capital Dakar.

This is the first-ever regional plan under the European Union’s Global Gateway, she noted.

The Global Gateway seeks to mobilize up to €300 billion ($34 billion) for public and private infrastructure around the world by 2027.

The strategy is expected to use funding from EU institutions and member countries to leverage private-sector investment.

The Global Gateway is rooted in “the values to which Europe and Africa are committed, such as transparency, sustainability, good governance and concern for the well-being of the people, she said.

Without mentioning as to how the funds would be raised or spent, Von der Leyen proclaimed Europe to be the continent’s biggest and most reliable partner.

Von der Leyen, who arrived on Wednesday to prepare for a summit between the EU and the African Union due on Feb. 17-18 in Brussels, said investments will be at the heart of the summit discussions because they are “the means of our shared ambition.”

For his part, Senegalese President Macky Sall said he expects that the EU-AU summit will produce a renewed, modernized and more action-oriented partnership.

Europe and Africa, he said, have an interest in working together.

Sall, who last week assumed the one-year term rotating African Union chairmanship, said he was committed to fighting global warming.

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