QUESTION: What is the status of the business council that consists of Libya, Tunisia, and the U.S.?
ANSWER: In December at the 2010 U.S.-Maghreb Entrepreneurship Conference, the U.S. Department of State announced the launch of the U.S.-North Africa Partnership for Economic Opportunity (NAPEO), a regional public-private partnership that enhances the network of entrepreneurs and business leaders in the United States and each of the five Maghreb countries -- Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, and Tunisia. NAPEO is the North African regional component of Partners for a New Beginning (PNB), a collection of public-private partnerships committed to broadening and deepening engagement between the United States and local communities abroad.
The next NAPEO economic ministers meeting is scheduled to take place at the end of September on the margins of the Fall 2011 World Bank/IMF meetings.
In late October, the Partnership will lead an entrepreneurship delegation with the Global Entrepreneurship Program to North Africa, including Tunisia. The delegation will be composed of U.S. diaspora investors, entrepreneur mentors and venture capitalists primarily from Silicon Valley. The Partnership will host the second annual U.S. – Maghreb Regional Entrepreneurship Conference in Morocco in January 2012.