Office of the Spokesperson
Secretary Antony J. Blinken will travel to Senegal on November 19-20, where he will meet with President Macky Sall and Foreign Minister Aïssata Tall Sall to affirm the close partnership between the United States and Senegal, and to discuss joint efforts addressing our shared global priorities. Areas for continued collaboration include ending the COVID-19 pandemic and improving public health; combatting the climate crisis; advancing inclusive economic growth, democracy, human rights, gender equality and women’s empowerment; and bolstering regional stability and security.
The United States and Senegal established diplomatic relations in 1960. Our bilateral engagement is robust, and Senegal is a strong regional, economic, and security partner of the United States.
The U.S.-Senegal partnership is based on our shared ideals of democracy, religious and social tolerance, good governance, and economic prosperity.
U.S. foreign assistance to the Senegalese people in 2020 in support of our shared goals was over $155 million.
Pandemic Response and Health Diplomacy
The United States and Senegal are collaborating closely to combat COVID-19 while also addressing the economic challenges faced by the Senegalese people as a result of the pandemic.
To date, the United States, in partnership with COVAX and the African Union, has provided 903,990 COVID-19 vaccine doses to Senegal.
The United States, through the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and our international partners, is supporting the Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IPD) in order to bolster the production of vaccines in Senegal and Africa. DFC has committed an initial $3.3 million to IPD to expand its vaccine production capabilities.
Since 2020, the United States has provided $10.7 million in emergency assistance for Senegal’s COVID-19 response to slow down the spread of the virus, strengthen surveillance efforts, improve the care of affected people, support vaccine readiness, and mitigate the impact of the disease.
Over the past 20 years, overall U.S. health assistance to Senegal has totaled over $880 million, including through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), and support to maternal/child health, nutrition, and health security.
Climate and Energy
Senegal is vulnerable to the impacts of the climate crisis such as droughts, pests, flooding, rising sea-levels, and coastal and maritime eco-system erosion. These pressures will likely create secondary impacts on the agriculture and fishing sectors as well as the coastal-dwelling population.
Senegal submitted its Nationally Determined Contribution and National Adaptation Plan to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Secretariat in December 2020. Senegal aims to increase its renewable energy capacity and build climate resilient infrastructure. Senegal is also reviewing a carbon tax which could reduce emissions and generate revenue for adaptation and mitigation funds.
Senegal aims to achieve universal power access by 2025 through a combination of on- and off-grid solutions, though the country’s rural concessions program faces significant hurdles. The United States supports these goals, including through investment in Lekela’s Taiba N’Diaye utility-scale wind farm. The wind farm provides 15 percent of the country’s electricity generation capacity. The United States has also provided a grant to develop Senegal’s largest grid-scale battery storage system to manage the variable energy generation from the wind farm and support more renewable energy on the Senegalese grid.
Trade and Investment
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Senegal’s economy grew at nearly 6 percent a year on average. As Senegal recovers from the pandemic’s economic impact, the International Monetary Fund’s October 2021 World Economic Outlook Report forecasts 10.8 percent growth for Senegal by 2023.
U.S. investment in Senegal has expanded in recent years, with 50 U.S. companies doing business across a range of sectors including infrastructure, information and communications technology, energy, transportation, hospitality, and financial services.
In 2020, U.S. exports to Senegal totaled $281 million and two-way trade between the United States and Senegal was $382 million.
Senegal signed a second Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact in 2018 that entered into force September 9. The five-year $550 million program, with an additional $50 million contribution from the Senegalese government, will support and enhance U.S. investments in Senegal’s electricity sector through modernization of the high-voltage transmission network and technical assistance to stakeholders managing Senegal’s electricity sector. Senegal’s first MCC Compact, which ran from 2009 to 2015, focused on increasing agricultural activity.
Senegal is a regional leader on food security and nutrition, and a strong partner through USAID’s Feed the Future program. Senegal places a high priority on agriculture and fisheries as vehicles for economic growth, and USAID support has scaled up productivity for four value chains: rice, maize, millet, and fisheries.
Democracy and Governance
Senegal has long served as a democratic model in the region with a long-standing history of adherence to constitutional democratic values and peaceful transitions of power, respect for the rule of law, religious freedom, tolerance, and protection of human rights.
USAID supports reforms that promote political and social stability, efficient management of public resources, and a citizen-centric approach to governance. Our assistance helps the Senegalese government to improve the implementation of public spending, strengthen oversight mechanisms, and facilitate public participation in the budget process.
USAID supports electoral processes and the rule of law by working with the Senegalese legislature to strengthen national policies to bolster democracy.
The United States also works to increase the professionalism of investigative journalism in Senegal, promote an independent media, and bolster civil society organizations that advocate for the welfare of the Senegalese people.
Peace and Security
Senegal is a steadfast partner of the United States in promoting regional stability and security in West Africa and beyond. Senegal has some of the most capable law enforcement, justice, corrections, and military organizations in the region, and is eager to share its lessons learned with its partners in the region.
The Department of State helps to build the capacity of the Senegalese military, law enforcement institutions, and the justice sector to advance counterterrorism, border security, maritime security, citizen security, the rule of law, and professionalization. S. security assistance to Senegal includes equipment, training, and advisory support to develop Senegalese military and criminal justice institutions.
Senegal is a recipient of U.S. security assistance under the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP). Through the TSCTP, we work to increase Senegal’s immediate and long-term capabilities to address terrorist threats and prevent the spread of violent extremism.
U.S. educational and cultural programs in Senegal advance democratic values, promote regional peace and security, and ensure inclusive economic growth and opportunities. These ties play a critical role in our efforts to strengthen democratic governance and improve equitable access to justice, promote economic development, and build public awareness of U.S. policy.
Senegal hosts one of the oldest, largest, and most respected Peace Corps programs in Africa. The program began in 1963 with the assignment of English teachers to secondary schools, and more than 4,000 Volunteers have served in Senegal to date. Today, the program integrates the priorities of the Government of Senegal with those of Peace Corps through projects in agriculture, agroforestry, community economic development, and health.
Nearly 100 Senegalese students, professors, and professionals participate every year in State Department exchange programs in the United States. There are more than 1,000 education and exchange program alumni in Senegal. These exchanges boost the U.S. economy by actively promoting partnerships with American businesses and educational institutions.
We reach Senegalese audiences outside the capital city of Dakar through our American Spaces. American Spaces are inviting, open-access learning and gathering places that promote interaction between local communities and the United States in support of U.S. policy. American Spaces focus on English language, youth empowerment, and entrepreneurship programs to deliver content and hands-on Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics (STEAM) programs. In 2019, American Spaces in Senegal welcomed more than 74,000 visitors.
The Department of State’s English Access Micro scholarship program is the largest in Sub-Saharan Africa. Since its inception in 2004, the program has graduated more than 5,000 students. Access alumni consistently score higher than their peers on national high school tests and become top candidates for State Department youth exchanges such as the Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Kennedy-Lugar program.
The Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI) Regional Training Center in Dakar, a USAID initiative, trains future leaders from across Francophone Africa in civic leadership, public management, and entrepreneurship. Since 2015, approximately 4,200 African youth completed training through the center.
In 2020, a USAID-funded reading program provided more than 743,520 textbooks written in Senegal’s most widely spoken languages. In just two years the program boosted the number of children reading fluently at their grade level from 1 percent to 37 percent.