US Agency supports African business

The United States African Foundation has invited local business partner in Zambia, Likando Mukumbuta, president of Zambia Agribusiness Technical Assistance Center (ZATAC), to partake in the 2008 AGOA Forum.

During his presentation at the Civil Society Forum on Capitol Hill this afternoon, Mr. Mukumbuta stated “In 50 years when we speak about development in Africa, it will be those invested in the continent today who will be present at the table to continue talks.”

USADF will most certainly be at that table.

USADF is an independent U.S. Government agency established by Congress in 1980 to respond directly to needs and solutions identified at the local level in poor and historically marginalized communities in Africa. Currently USADF operates in 18 African nations. Over the past 25 years, USADF has funded nearly 1,100 projects representing in excess of $150 million in support of small African enterprises and local African communities.

USADF has also invited Dinah Koney, co-owner of YENOK Wood Products Ltd., a wood products and home décor company in Takoradi, located in the western region of Ghana, which employs forty workers, to come to Washington and share her story with participants in the 2008 AGOA Forum.

Along with Mr. Mukumbuta, Mrs. Koney also spoke at the Civil Society Forum today. They will both participate in the Private Sector Forum at the Woodrow Wilson Center on July 16, 2008.

During her presentation this afternoon, Mrs. Koney stated “the beauty of ADF goes beyond its financing because they assist in training and real capacity building.”

ADF’s works through local partners in 18 countries to target 100% African-owned small businesses and marginalized community-based groups to develop viable business plans. ADF provides a package of management, training, and product marketing services to eligible grantees.

Recent USADF projects include providing funding to support increased milk production by 1200 camel and cow herders in former slave communities of southern Mauritania. ADF is also launching a program in post-conflict Burundi to expand the production of cut flowers for European markets and improved quality coffee production in Tanzania for export to Starbuck’s Coffee. For more information on USADF, its programs and application guidelines, visit