Peter Watson, president and CEO of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (Opic), has announced the membership of Opic’s Africa Investment Advisory Council, a 10-member committee established pursuant to the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act to assist Opic efforts to generate increased US private investment in sub-Saharan Africa.


“We are convinced that Africa has the potential to become one of the world’s most dynamic emerging markets in the next few years, and as such an important destination for US investment,” Watson says. “With the Africa Investment Advisory Council, Opic has assembled 10 leading experts on both successful investment strategy and US trade with Africa. Opic will rely on their counsel to steward agency strategy in this priority region, to the benefit of both African and American businesses. A strong and prosperous Africa is in the best interest of the United States.”

The members of Opic’s Africa Investment Advisory Council are:

Paul Applegarth,
Managing Director & Chief Operating Officer, Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund

Dr. Kurt Campbell,
Senior Vice President & Director, International Security Program, CSIS

Tony Carroll,
Managing Director, Manchester Trade, Ltd.

Hon Eva Clayton,
Member of the US House of Representatives, 1st District, North Carolina

Aki Debayo-Doherty

Chief Executive Officer, Hammatan

Robert Dugger,
Managing Director, Tudor Investment Corporation

Matthew Freedman,
President, Global Impact

Dwayne A. Gathers,
President, Hanover Group, Inc.

Hon Lottie Shakelford,
Executive Vice President, Global USA

Hansel E Tookes,
President, Raytheon International, Inc.

Council members represent private industry and non-governmental organisations, and include at least one small business representative. They serve two-year terms.

Historically, Opic has committed a total of US$3.5bn to Africa in financing, political risk insurance and through Opicpport investment funds. Currently, Opic providing approximately US$1bn in financing & insurance to the region.

In August, Watson announced that Opic would provide financing to four projects designed to help South Africa, Mozambique, Malawi and Ghana meet critical long-term developmental needs, including a US$15mn loan guaranty to help provide shelter for up to half a million South Africans.

Opic was established as an agency of the US government in 1971. It helps US businesses invest overseas, fosters economic development in new and emerging markets, complements the private sector in managing risks associated with foreign direct investment, and supports US foreign policy. Because Opic charges market-based fees for its products, it operates on a self-sustaining basis at no net cost to taxpayers.

Opic’s political risk insurance and financing help US businesses of all sizes invest in more than 150 emerging markets and developing nations worldwide. Over the agency’s 30-year history, Opic has supported US$142bn-worth of investments that have helped developing countries to generate over US$11bn in host-government revenues and create over 673,000 host-country jobs. Opic projects have also generated US$64bn in US exports and create more than 253,000 American jobs.