Russian President Vladimir Putin has told African leaders he wants to more than double the amount Russia trades with the continent as he welcomed them to a meeting at the Black Sea resort of Sochi. While education and healthcare are still Russia's main focus in parts of Africa, Putin wants to expand his influence far beyond this.
Early September, while addressing the staff and students at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, Foreign Affairs Minister, Sergey Lavrov, reiterated Russia’s readiness to cooperate actively in the sustainable economic development and to strengthen efforts at training the needed specialists and professionals for Africa.
The Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia is working on a collaboration program with African universities, with the backing of the Moscow government, that will see Russian culture and language taught in universities on the continent. It will also provide scholarships to study maths and sciences at the RUDN, in a deal to be implemented in universities in nine African countries. In a deal that is likely to commence this year, the Russian institution will identify partner universities in Angola, Zambia, Namibia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Gambia, Nigeria and Ghana.