Africa, Great Power Competition, and the US Navy


Russia and China want to leverage Africa’s people and resources. U.S. Naval Forces Africa aspires to work with African partners to bring about a secure and prosperous continent.

No less than Europe and the Pacific, Africa is caught up in the great power competition described in the 2018 National Defense Strategy. As Russia and China intensify their efforts to leverage Africa’s people and resources, the continent’s future lies in the balance, with direct impact on both global and American security.

Africa is well positioned for economic and industrial expansion by its strategic location and fast-growing population. The continent is currently home to one-sixth of humanity; by 2050, it will support one in four humans, of whom three-fifths will be under the age of 24. Their collective potential will only be realized, however, if Africa bolsters its security institutions across national, regional, and local levels. U.S. Naval Forces Africa aspires to work with our African partners to achieve shared objectives centered on the belief that a secure and prosperous African continent will benefit all. Alongside the Naval Forces Africa, other Western partners and allies continue to support our African partners. If we aren’t there to help, surely others will rush to fill the gap.

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