Politics

Sajjan says Mali needs private sector investment to rebuild

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan says business investment has a role to play in helping war-torn countries like Mali recover from conflict.
Canada's Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan leaves after a news conference announcing Canada will send helicopters and support troops to join a United Nations peacekeeping mission in Mali, on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, March 19, 2018. (Chris Wattie/Reuters)

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan says business investment has a role to play in helping war-torn countries like Mali recover from conflict.

Broader economic development is needed to help such countries, he says, because the military can't do it on its own.

Sajjan's assessment comes as Canada's newly established development finance institution has announced its first private sector partnership.

The US$10-million investment by FinDev Canada will bring electricity to millions of poor people in Kenya, in a more stable east Africa.

Earlier this week, Sajjan joined Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland in announcing Canada's new UN peacekeeping mission in Mali, a west African country coping with the aftermath of a jihadist insurgency.

Canada has made a 12-month peacekeeping commitment to Mali, which will include about 250 personnel, two Chinook helicopters and four smaller armed Griffons to act as escorts.

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