Three years ago, a new Africa fund was set up at a EU summit in Malta with the idea that migration could be slowed down by providing additional aid to countries of origin. That fund now contains 3.3 billion euros and last week, EU leaders raised an extra 500 million euros during the migration summit. The money goes to issues such as poverty reduction, economic development, border control and ‘migration management’.
‘But all that money is far from enough,’ says European Foreign Coordinator Federica Mogherini. ‘A European fund for companies to invest in has to be set up as well, so that together with the EU, we can raise more than € 48 billion. All that money can be invested in sustainable energy, infrastructure and companies, for example by giving microcredits. That must ultimately ensure that the African economy is stimulated and that there is no longer any reason for Africans to come to Europe. ‘
The Senegalese-American hip-hop world star Aliaune Damala Bouga, a.k.a. Akon has taken matters into his own hands. A few years ago, he collected billions to build not only a hypermodern city named Akon Crypto City, but also to build a huge solar power plant and network. That solar energy network was taken into use this week and now provides electricity for 600 million Africans.
The West African country where the artist grew up is extatic. The Senegalese president has already made large pieces of land available to build the ‘Akon Crypto City’. In this new high-tech city near the capital Dakar, homes, shops, parks, schools and industrial sites are currently being built. In addition, the city will operate entirely on its own cryptocurrency: Akoin. According to the singer, inflation, an unstable currency and lack of banks are a major problem for the African economy. The Akoin must bring safety and stability, so that young entrepreneurs can develop and flourish, according to the singer.
Akon does not know anything about all the technical and financial aspects of this enormous project. “I come up with the concept and the tech heads do the rest,” he jokes. Interested investors can register via the website. The philanthropist has already proven he keeps his promises with his Akon Lighting Africa. This organisation brings solar panels to remote areas in more than seventeen African countries.
This post is also available in: Dutch