Dar es Salaam. The Prime Minister of the United Republic of Tanzania Kassim Majaliwa is scheduled to departure on Sunday, October 20, 2019 to Russia to represent President John Magufuli in the Russia-Africa summit to be held in Sochi between October 23 and 24 this year.
The statement issued by the office of The Prime Minister said the meeting will be co-chaired between Russian President Vladmir Putin and Egypt President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who is also the chairman of African Union.
The summit is aimed at cementing the relationship between African nations and Russia, which weakened after the disintegration of Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (USSR) in 1991, according to the statement.
“There is quite a bit of potential for Russian-African military-technical and industrial cooperation. Russian companies are capable of strengthening their own positions on the African market by properly utilizing their advantages. We expect interest in this region among Russian industrialists to increase going forward. At any rate, we will do everything we can for this,” Minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation Denis Manturov has been quoted by international media as saying.
The statement said the meeting will be held in two session; the first being the Russia Business Forum to be held on October 23, before the meeting between Russian President and Head of States to be held in the following day.
With roughly 3,000 African businesspersons expected to attend this event, the Russian government has not revealed which businesses will be present.
Analysts say Russia increasingly looks to Africa as a region where it can project power and influence.
They say AU has been another important target of Russian diplomatic and security outreach in Africa and a tool for Russian diplomacy to counterbalance US and European influence in Africa.
“Russia has tried to tap the limited economic tools at its disposal to reestablish its presence in Africa. The continent’s booming population, need for stable long-term energy supplies, and abundance of natural resources hold a certain appeal for various Russian private and state-owned corporations, even though Russian players have few competitive advantages,” says Paul Stronski, senior fellow in Carnegie’s Russia and Eurasia Program.