On Thursday, March 28, the Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings (AGI) and the Congressional African Staff Association (CASA) hosted a briefing for congressional staffers on the growing relationship between the BRICS—Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa—and African countries, and implication for U.S. foreign policy and economic relations with Africa. Panelists included: Yun Sun, Brookings visiting fellow, and Haroon Bhorat, professor of economics and director of the Development Policy Research Unit at the University of Cape Town. Brookings Africa Growth Initiative Nonresident Senior Fellow Vera Songwe moderated the discussion, and Gregory H. Simpkins, professional staff member of the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Human Rights, provided opening remarks.
This event is part of the Africa Policy Dialogue on the Hill, a monthly congressional briefing hosted by AGI and CASA on topical issues relevant to Africa’s growth and security.
MR. SIMPKINS: Good morning, everyone. Welcome to the Africa Dialogue on the Hill. I’m Greg Simpkins, Professional Staff Member for the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations. Our forums offer an African perspective on Africa issues as well as those of outside experts. This is a monthly co-presentation by the Congressional Africa Staff Association, or CASA, and the Africa Growth Initiative of the Brookings Institution.
For those who don’t know CASA, we’re a bipartisan, bicameral association of staff members who seek to educate our colleagues on today’s substantive Africa issues on the continent and within greater Africa diaspora through panel discussions, briefings, and other events with decision makers and officials involved in Africa policy.
On March 28, the Africa Growth Initiative at Brookings and the Congressional African Staff Association hosted a briefing for congressional staffers on the growing relationship between the BRICS—Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa—and African countries, and implication for U.S. foreign policy and economic relations with Africa.
The [30th Street] station site is “an impediment in its current state,” said Vey, co-author of a recently released study calling on Philadelphia leaders to foster an “innovation district” from 17th Street to 43rd Street along the Market Street corridor. “On the other hand, it’s obviously a major opportunity, as well.”
“Washington has left the building. You’re going to have to leverage your own assets. You’re going to have to unlock your own capital. You cannot rely on anyone anymore at, quote-unquote, higher levels of government.”
Andes also praised the OKC innovation district, but he “questions whether the state itself is spending enough money to get Oklahoma school children where they need to be to thrive in the 21st-century economy.” Andes advised, “When companies and others start making their bets around the world, are they going to look at Oklahoma City? If you don’t have the workforce it won’t happen.”