The U.S.-ECOWAS Business Initiative (USEBI) is a bilateral organization composed of top American and West African companies (The CEO Forum) engaged in increasing two-way trade, removing or reducing commercial barriers, and fostering a better understanding of respective investment climates. USEBI accomplishes these objectives by developing policies in concert with relevant arms of West African and U.S. governments, along with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) participating members.
USEBI, a program of the Africa Department at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, consists of a representative of ECOWAS; West Africa-based businesses, members of the U.S. Chamber, and Chamber staff, who are primarily responsible for day-to-day activities. The initiative is co-chaired by representatives of an American and West African company. USEBI has full access to the Chamber’s resources, including the congressional and legal affairs divisions, as well as various Chamber institutes and programs to help implement and promote USEBI policies, initiatives, and programs.
One of the major obstacles to doing business in the ECOWAS region is the lack of efficient infrastructure and corporate governance. USEBI works with American and ECOWAS policymakers and partners to find appropriate solutions to such obstacles to promote better integration of this initiative. Improved infrastructure and better governance facilitate trade and attract foreign investors, resulting in business opportunities for companies, the alleviation of poverty, and rapid and sustainable economic growth owing to the competitiveness of local production.