United Kingdom supports South Africa land reform, says May

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May added that Britain would also host an African investment summit next year, and would open new diplomatic missions across the continent. While on a three-day tour of the continent, May pledged 4 billion pounds ($5.1 billion) of support for African markets.

May said she was confident of striking an acceptable new deal with Brussels as Britain prepares to leave the European Union in March.

"African states will enter these discussions (with Britain) from a position of strength", said Clark.

"But alongside that what we're doing is working for a good deal".

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"Look at what the director general of the World Trade Organisation has said".

"This includes government's disobedience to court orders, reported extrajudicial killings, torture, unlawful political arrests and detention, restriction of free speech and media freedom and lack of government's accountability as detailed in the reports by various global bodies, including Transparency worldwide, Amnesty global and the US Department of State".

Mrs May said national self-interest and global co-operation were not in conflict and the United Kingdom could play a key role in harnessing the "innovation and creativity" of young people in Africa, 60% of whose population is under the age of 25.

She said the rival was not an "idle threat" and Britain would refuse to be an "end user" of the current project. It's in the world's interest to see that those jobs are created.

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She next heads to Kenya on Wednesday, before visiting Nigeria 24 hours lates. May while meeting the children of the ID Mkize Senior Secondary School, was warmly welcomed by the students by a traditional dance.

Mrs May said the Government intends to carry over the EU's economic partnership agreement with Mozambique and the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), which consists of South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland.

"I think it's impossible not to look at the British market at this point, but I'll also say that while Britain remains a viable trade partner, it just doesn't hold the same value to Africa as China and to a lesser extent, the U.S.".

"The reality is that the Chinese, the French, the Indians, indeed Korea, Japan, Germany even, tend to have had a much more proactive response to business in Africa than we traditionally have had".

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United Nations figures put annual UK investment in the continent at $55bn - ahead of France's $49bn and second to the U.S. on $57bn. Both countries are former British colonies.

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