Russia has cancelled $23 billion of debt owed by African countries, and pledged to provide more financial and technical assistance to the continent, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Wednesday.
Speaking at the second Russia–Africa Summit 2023 in Moscow, Putin said that Russia has also allocated an additional $90 million for humanitarian and development projects in Africa.
Putin said that Russia supports the expansion of African representation in the UN Security Council and other UN bodies, and that it will help African countries open new embassies and consulates in Russia.
“Russia and Africa are working to develop cooperation in all areas and strengthen their honest, open, constructive partnership,” he said.
The Russian leader also offered to help Africa combat threats such as terrorism, piracy, and transnational crimes, and said that his country will continue to train personnel from African countries.
Putin said that Russian businesses have a lot to offer to their African partners, and that his country is ready to provide trade preferences, support the creation of modern production and agricultural sectors, and assist through relevant international structures and agencies.
“Russia will always be a responsible international supplier of agricultural products,” he added.
The president also stressed the importance of sovereignty, saying that it is “not a one-time achieved state,” and that it must be constantly protected.
He said that the transition to national currencies and the establishment of transport and logistics chains would contribute to the increase in mutual trade turnover.