For observers of the Democratic Republic of the Congo there is rarely good news. Headlines always seem to indicate the country is aflame with violent conflict, fueled by ruthless parties who see the DRC as a place to grab what you can and make a fortune in the process.
Democratic Republic of the Congo: Rapid growth opens new opportunities
Democratic Republic of the Congo: Rapid growth opens new opportunities is a Special Report prepared by The Washington Times International Advocacy Department.
The following is a recent interview with Prime Minister Augustin Matata Ponyo Mapon of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The splendor of the Democratic Republic of the Congo's natural resources can be experienced first-hand in its many national parks, wildlife refuges and endangered-species sanctuaries, including two of the largest national parks in the entire African continent.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo has tremendous hydropower potential. It has been estimated that it could produce 100,000 MW of electricity, enough to meet all the current needs of Africa.
The Congo River runs 2,920 miles through the center of Africa, most of its massive flow winding through the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
There are signs of hope in Eastern Congo. This resource-rich region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo has finally seen the fighting and mayhem recede and a fragile peace take hold.
The vast natural resources, considerable arable land and energy potential of the Democratic Republic of the Congo have been attracting investors to the region since the colonial period, and continue to bring billions of investment dollars into the country every year.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo has long been known for its wealth of natural resources. Wars have been fought over them, and to this day they are the reason for neighbors meddling in DRC affairs, and militias and criminal gangs looking for ways to get hold of them for financial benefit.
With this rich natural endowment and a climate ideal for most agriculture, the Democratic Republic of the Congo has the potential to be an agricultural powerhouse for Africa.
While the Democratic Republic of the Congo has long been known for its wide array of minerals and other natural resources, oil and gas have not been included in that long list. This is beginning to change and the DRC could join the growing club of major sub-Saharan oil producers, currently headed by Nigeria and Angola.
Every government recognizes that strong national infrastructure is critically important to steady economic development. Transportation infrastructure is one of the lubricants that keeps the gears of an economy operating smoothly.
The name "Congo" conjures up images of rushing rivers, impenetrable forests, volcanos and fantastic wildlife, especially gorillas. Rightly so. They are all to be found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
You may think you don't know anything about Congolese music. But if you've ever tapped your foot to the irresistible beat of the rumba, you've experienced a national tradition.