Editorial2President Barack Obama hosted an unprecedented and important U.S.-Africa Summit last week with dozens of African leaders.

Obama invited close to 50 African heads of state to the gathering where discussions on trade, security and governance took stage.

While many will see the importance of Africa’s strengthening its relationship to the world’s superpower, it is also important for the United States to develop stronger ties to Africa.

The United States has to now play catch-up with China in engaging Africa in trade. China has invested heavily in the continent, mainly to extract mineral resources for its booming economy.

It is important that the U.S. increase its financial ties with Africa, a continent that is home to six of the world’s 10 fastest-growing economies and a rapidly expanding middle class.

During the three-day summit, Obama sought to highlight Africa’s potential, particularly as an untapped trading partner for U.S. businesses. Obama was correct when he said that even though the continent faces significant challenges, “A new Africa is emerging.”

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