The U.S. Government’s Prosper Africa initiative officially launched its Africa Tech for Trade Alliance on April 12 at the 2023 Africa Fintech Summit in Washington, DC. The tech alliance of major U.S. and African companies will accelerate e-commerce and digital trade in Africa and address legal, regulatory, and logistical bottlenecks across the continent.
Speaking at the launch event of U.S. and African tech executives and entrepreneurs, Dr. Monde Muyangwa, USAID Assistant Administrator in the Bureau for Africa, emphasized that the rapid evolution of Africa’s digital ecosystem is fueling economic growth and prosperity on the continent.
“Through Africa’s digital transformation, we are seeing new connections taking root,” Muyangwa said. “These transformations are building an inclusive and resilient African digital ecosystem, which is leading to increased productivity, competitiveness, and service delivery.”
The Prosper Africa Tech for Trade Alliance was first announced at President Biden’s U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in December as part of a package of $15.7 billion in new and expanded trade and investment commitments made in the Summit’s Business Forum Deal Room. The Alliance will also advance the White House’s new signature Digital Transformation with Africa (DTA) initiative, which will strengthen digital access, literacy, and digital enabling environments across the continent.
By leveraging leading U.S. and African companies’ technology assets, services, and expertise, the Alliance will grow African trade and e-commerce flows in goods and services; promote African firms’ and economies’ trade and productivity; strengthen the African workforce’s technological talent; and promote a better policy-enabling environment for trade and investment in Africa.
New activities launched under the Prosper Africa Tech for Trade Alliance, which is part of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s global eTrade Alliance, will focus on key sectors such as supply chain and logistics solutions, digital payments and trade finance, e-commerce, policy enablement, and digital skills and training.
With catalytic funding from the Alliance, Kasha, a woman-owned health e-commerce platform serving East Africa and Alliance member, announced the company’s plans to scale their innovative platform to provide an alternative approach to supporting patients with non-communicable diseases like diabetes and hypertension, and facilitate direct access to high quality and affordable medicines.
Kasha founder and CEO, Joanna Bichsel said the company will be expanding its platform, particularly in the area of diabetes and hypertension, to ensure people have greater access to health care information and testing. “We are also partnering with pharmaceutical manufacturers to ensure that genuine, quality products are available and affordable to everyone who needs them.”
Dr. Barbara Kotschwar, Executive Director for Visa’s Economic Empowerment Institute (VEEI), cited at the launch event that improving the policy and regulatory environment is a key reason why Visa is part of the Alliance. Kotschwar noted that removing bottlenecks like overlapping regulations and restrictions on cross-border flows will help promote greater trade and economic activities.
Alliance member Visa pledged in the US-Africa Business Forum’s Deal Room to invest $1 billion towards spurring innovation in Africa. “The pledge will further scale Visa’s operations in Africa and will help enable greater access to digital payments as an entry point for expanding formal financial services for individuals and companies.”
The Prosper Africa Tech for Trade Alliance will be rolling out new initiatives and engagements, to learn more about the Prosper Africa Tech for Trade Alliance, visit