Biya and Chantal Meet Obama and Michelle at the White House (+Photo)
U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama have met with Cameroon’s presidential couple His Excellency Paul and wife, Chantal Biya. The meeting took place in the Blue Room of the White House during a Tuesday dinner.
Apart from Cameroon’s presidential couple, President Barack Obama hosted other African leaders – numbering over 40 – in the sumptuous dinner tied to this week’s U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington that ends on August 6.
“Never before have we hosted a dinner at the White House like this, with so many presidents,” said Mr. Obama in his toast. “Tonight we are making history, and it’s an honor to have all of you here. I stand before you as the president of the United States, a proud American. I also stand before you as the son of a man from Africa,” added Obama. He concluded: “So I propose a toast to the new Africa. The Africa that is rising and so full of promise. To our shared task to keep on working for the peace and prosperity and justice that all our people seek, that all our people so richly deserve. Cheers. Enjoy your dinner everybody.”
At the Summit, US-Africa ties are being solidified. While the Summit may have political and diplomatic connotations, the economic aspect dominated talks. The Summit will advance U.S. Administration’s focus on trade and investment in Africa and highlight America’s commitment to Africa’s security, its democratic development, and its people. Already, Cameroon’s exports to the United States include petroleum, cocoa, rubber, timber, and coffee while imports from the United States include machinery, chemicals, aircraft, vehicles, and plastics. The U.S. is a leading investor in Cameroon, largely through the Chad-Cameroon petroleum pipeline project.