Russian President Vladimir Putin has aligned a number of goodies for African states, as he looks away from the West over economic sanctions.
The goodies include increased cooperation in the field of energy, and medicine and also doubling the quotas of African students in Russian universities.
“I want to emphasize that our country has always given and will continue to give priority to cooperation with African states,” Putin said in Moscow during a speech to African representatives.
“Our country is determined to continue building a full strategic partnership with our African friends, and we are ready to shape the global agenda together,” the Russian president continued.
He said this on the side-line of a state visit by Chinese President Xi Jinpin – coming almost one and a half years since Russia invaded Ukraine.
The decision comes at a time when Africa has maintained stand to defend its traditions and morals – at a time when the west has been pushing not so aligned agenda in what it terms as human rights.
According to Putin, Russia, like Africa, “defends traditional moral values” by “resisting the neo-colonial ideology imposed from abroad”.
He promised to supply food to needy African states, if the important agreement on Ukrainian exports was not renewed in two months.
Russia had already multiplied initiatives on the African continent in recent years, aimed at posing as an alternative to the former colonial powers.
The next Russia-Africa summit, the second of its kind, is due to be held July 26-29 in St. Petersburg. Mr. Putin assured Monday to prepare “very seriously” for this meeting and invited African leaders and regional organizations to take part.