UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson told African leaders Monday that Britain would be more open to migrants from their continent after Brexit as he hosted a summit intended to boost trading ties.
He also promised an end to direct UK state investment in thermal coal mining or coal power plants overseas, saying London would focus on supporting a switch to low-carbon energy sources.
Opening the first UK-Africa Investment Summit in London, Johnson made a clear pitch for business less than two weeks before Britain leaves the European Union.
He told the conference involving 16 national leaders and representatives of another five countries, he wanted to make Britain their “investment partner of choice”.
After highlighting all Britain has to offer, he said Brexit would mean an end to preferential treatment for EU migrants.
Johnson was due to meet with the presidents of Rwanda, Ghana and Nigeria at the summit, and meet the leaders of Egypt and Kenya on Tuesday.
Nigeria’s Muhammadu Buhari said Brexit offered an opportunity for increased free trade across the Commonwealth — and highlighted visas as a key issue.
The prime minister, with Glasgow staging the next UN climate change summit later this year, also announced a shift in investment strategy to help combat global warming.