Laura Lane, who is president of Global Affairs at UPS and has had widespread international experience on behalf of private industry as well as government, has been appointed to the U.S. Commerce Department’s President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa. Mrs. Lane is to serve on the council for the 2019-2021 term along with 24 other appointees.
Her appointment coincides with the Trump administration’s unveiling of its “Prosper Africa” agenda which seeks to shift American focus on the continent from aid to industry.
Deputy Secretary of Commerce Karen Dunn Kelley, according to a Commerce Department news release, said on June 19, that the U.S. is launching a $50 million program to offer technical help to companies looking to enter or grow in Africa, which is urbanizing more rapidly than anywhere else on earth.
“The region is projected to have 1.52 billion consumers by 2025 — nearly five times the size of the U.S. population,” according to the release.
“But Americans are missing out on that market, Ms. Kelley said. “U.S. exports to Africa have dropped by nearly a third since their 2014 high.”
The release also acknowledges that the new policy emerges six months after national security adviser John Bolton announced that the administration was switching gears on the continent — with an emphasis on countering the rising influence of China and Russia.
As president of Global Public Affairs at UPS, Mrs. Lane is responsible for all worldwide government affairs activities for UPS among the more than 220 countries and territories it serves.
Prior to joning UPS, she was managing director and head of International Government Affairs at CitiGroup. Before joining Citi, she was vice president for Global Public Policy with Time Warner where she represented the company on federal and international levels on all issues affecting Time Warner and its divisions.
In her government career, Mrs. Lane was responsible for bilateral trade affairs with the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean countries at the United States Trade Representative. At USTR she negotiated market access commitments on trade in services with China as part of its accession to the World Trade Organization and served as U.S. negotiator for the WTO Financial Services negotiations., which resulted in a first-ver global agreement in 1997.
She served in the U.S. Foreign Service from 1990-1997. Among her many overseas assignments, she was the economic and political-military affairs officer at the American Embassy in Kigali, Rwanda from 1993-1994. She led the evacuation effort of American citizen from Rwanda in April 1994 with the outbreak of the civil war and regained in August as political advisor to U.S. forces providing humanitarian relief to Rwandan refugees.
Other appointees on the Advisory Council include:
- Andrew Inglis, President and Chief Executive Officer, Kosmos Energy, Dallas, Texas
- Andrew Patterson, Global Manager for Strategy and Market and Business Development, Infrastructure, Bechtel Corporation, Reston, Virginia
- Andrew Torre, Regional President for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa, Visa Inc., Foster City, California
- Arjan Toor, Chief Executive Officer, Cigna Africa, Bloomfield, Connecticut
- Bill Killeen, President and Chief Executive Officer, Acrow Bridge, Parsippany, New Jersey
- Brittany Underwood, Founder and Executive Chairman, Akola, Dallas, Texas
- Bruce Hanson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Credence ID, Emeryville, California
- Chris Toth, President, Oncology Systems, Varian Medical Systems, Palo Alto, California
- Craig Arnold, President, Dow Sub-Saharan Africa, Dow Chemical Company, Midland, Michigan
- Damian Halloran, Vice President, Infectious Disease, Emerging Markets, Rapid Diagnostics, Abbott, Chicago, Illinois
- Farid Fezoua, President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Africa, Washington, D.C.
- Frank Mosier, Chief Executive Officer, Rendeavour, Inc., New York, New York
- Fred Sisson, Chief Executive Officer, Synnove Energy, Reduit, Republic of Mauritius
- Jake Cusack, Founding and Managing Partner, CrossBoundary Group, Washington, D.C.
- Jason Andringa, President and Chief Executive Officer, Vermeer, Pella, Iowa
- Jason P.H. Brantley, Director for Sales and Marketing, Agriculture and Turf Division, Africaand Asia, John Deere, Moline, Illinois
- John Nevergole, Chief Executive Officer, ABD Group, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Olivier Puech, Executive Vice President and President, Latin American and EMEA, American Tower Corporation, Miami, Florida
- Paul Marcroft, Chief Commercial Officer, APR Energy, Jacksonville, Florida
- Peter Sullivan, Managing Director, Africa Public Sector Group, Citi, New York, New York
- Raghu Malhotra, President, Middle East & Africa, Mastercard, Purchase, New York
- Rahamatu Wright, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Shea Yeleen, Washington, D.C.
- Susan Silbermann, Global President for Emerging Markets, Pfizer, New York, New York
- Takreem El-Tohamy, General Manager, Middle East and Africa, IBM, Armonk, New York