On September 10, 2015, the Wilson Center launched the Brown Capital Management Africa Forum initiative, a 5-year platform for substantive and solutions-oriented dialogue on key trade, investment, and development issues in Africa and in U.S.-Africa relations. The launch of the Forum coincided with the one-year anniversary of the historic U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, held in August 2014, through which the Obama Administration sought to reposition U.S.-Africa relations by bringing business and economic issues squarely to the fore. The inaugural Forum consisted of a series of events assessing the progress made towards achieving the $33 billion in commitments that were established at the 2014 Summit, including $14 billion in trade and investments from U.S. companies and government.

More importantly, the Forum offered recommendations for building on this progress and further advancing mutually beneficial U.S.-Africa economic relations. The inaugural Forum brought together over 150 participants and stakeholders—including U.S. and African officials, as well as representatives from the business sector, non-governmental organizations, think tanks, academics, members of the African diaspora, and other interested parties—in an inclusive and forward-leaning dialogue on U.S.-Africa economic relations. See below for the full summary of recommendations.