The European Union has set aside more than 150 billion euros ($170 billion) for investments in Africa through a global fund established to provide an alternative to Chinese money, according to the European Commission.
The investment would cover half of the EU’s $300 billion Global Gateway project, which was unveiled in December with the goal of boosting Europe’s supply chains and combating climate change in areas such as health, energy, and transportation.
It comes as many European countries work to limit illegal migration from Africa, which is fueled in part by poverty and unemployment, and as African fossil fuel producers push back against rigorous carbon reduction targets established by richer countries to combat global warming.
At a press conference in Dakar with Senegalese President Macky Sall, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen launched the regional plan. It is unclear how the money will be distributed or spent.
The EU stated at the fund’s inauguration in December that the money will come from EU institutions, governments, EU financial institutions, and national development banks in the form of grants, loans, or guarantees.
According to an EU source, the 150 billion may be paid out in 20 billion annual installments, with just 6 billion coming from EU funds and the balance coming from EU states and private investors.