Infrastructure and Education for Africa,
Built by Caterpillar
Africa’s population is growing faster than anywhere else on Earth. Its numbers are expected to double by 2050, with an additional 122 million people added to its workforce by 2020.
When population grows, demand for roads, buildings, and clean water and energy grows, too. Caterpillar intends to be part of this transformation in Africa. In 2016, Caterpillar, our independent dealers, and the Caterpillar Foundation announced plans to invest more than $1 billion in African countries over the next five years.
The investment will include a major upgrade in customer service capabilities, including enhanced parts distribution capacity, state-of-the-art Certified Rebuild Centers and new dealer branch locations to better serve our customers throughout the continent. It will also help fund the expansion of Technicians for Africa, Caterpillar’s online skills development program that launched in 2015. The e-learning website provides a broad, basic technical education—free of cost.
“Even though there are many schools here that have excellent technical programs, there are very few, if any, that are affordable and accessible,” said Mehul Atree, Caterpillar Asia Pacific, CIS, Africa, Middle East (ACAM) Marketing and Operations Support.
Investing in Egypt
One beneficiary of Caterpillar’s investments in Africa will be the country of Egypt. Infrastructure development is one of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s top priorities. The president and Caterpillar senior leadership met in 2016 to discuss the future of Egyptian rail, infrastructure and power generation. Caterpillar has been involved of some of Egypt’s largest infrastructure projects, from the expansion of the Suez Canal to the construction of its national roads and New Capital City. Mantrac, Egypt’s Cat dealer, will open a branch to support this new city located outside Cairo.
Technicians for Africa makes a quality education accessible to anyone. The program initially launched in Nigeria, Mozambique and Democratic Republic of the Congo, and quickly expanded to 12 additional countries (Angola, Ethiopia, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Liberia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.) To date, the program has about 5,000 users and has awarded more than 100 certificates, and we expect to reach many thousands more in the years ahead.
Perhaps most importantly, funding from Caterpillar and the Caterpillar Foundation will support projects in Africa that assist those living in poverty, specifically girls and women, through training, policy work, entrepreneurship programs and more. The Foundation’s past investments have benefited hundreds of thousands with access to education, clean water and sanitation and microfinance. Now, the Caterpillar Foundation will commit approximately $15 million by 2020 to organizations working to improve lives across Africa.