What Macron Promised Tony Elumelu
French President Emmanuel Macron visited the Tony Elumelu Foundation, TEF on Wednesday afternoon during his official visit to Nigeria.
During the visit, Macron had an interactive session with over 2000 Tony Elumelu entrepreneurs, exchanging ideas on entrepreneurship and how to change the African narrative.
Before he left, he promised that as part of the commitment to the African private sector, he would be donating 70% of the loans offered by TEF to entrepreneurs.
He signed an agreement with TEF for the loan and said he would also invest his time and funds in the education of African girls.
Speaking during the session, Macron said it was important for Africa and Europe to work together, as according to him, “if Africa fails, Europe and France will fail”.
He said, “The unique way to succeed is to encourage private sector as this is a crucial way to achieve sustainable inclusive growth. When young people have access to jobs, then they have a chance at a better life, and the society has a chance at development.
“We need more Africans to succeed in Africa, and then we can start working on changing the mentality of other Europeans, and other continents, on having a positive mind towards Africa. We plan to gather a lot of players to build and develop the African private sector.”
Continuing, he said: “African governments need to come together to work with the African Union to create a future for the young generation. They also need to deal with demography because if the trend of five to eight children per woman continues, poverty would never end. And if you ask these women, it is not their choice; it is as a result of decreased education and forced marriages.”
He also told the entrepreneurs: “Your nationality does not hinder your success. If you can succeed in Nigeria, you can succeed anywhere in the world.”
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