President of the United States (US) Barack Obama is to attend the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) in Nairobi, Kenya on July 25-26, which is one of his initiatives aimed at bringing together startups, business leaders, mentors, and high-level government officials.
The event has expanded globally since Obama elevated entrepreneurship to the forefront of the his engagement agenda in Cairo in 2009, with summits held in the US, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Malaysia, and Morocco.
It will now take place in Africa for the first time in July, also marking the first visit of Obama to Kenya, the homeland of his father, since he became president.
“The established tradition demonstrates the US Government’s continued commitment to fostering entrepreneurship around the world,” the White House said.
“The Administration has delivered on this commitment, greatly expanding support for entrepreneurship and economic opportunity around the world.”
The White House said signature achievements in the five years of the initiative include the hosting of five summits, which it said have “elevated entrepreneurship on the global agenda and inspired new generations of innovators to choose entrepreneurship as a profession”.
“These Summits have opened up new markets for products and encouraged policymakers to break down barriers to business, such as the draft law currently being developed by the Moroccan Government to create a legal status for startups,” it said.
The US government has invested in over 1,000 initiatives and programmes promoting entrepreneurship around the world, while the country sends some of its top entrepreneurs abroad through the Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship.
It has also committed around US$3.2 billion to supporting micro, small, and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs) and mobilised US$80 million in private capital for startup accelerators in the developing world through development financing institutions and programmes.
If you are interested in attending the Nairobi event, you must apply here by Monday, May 18.