Earl Gast joins Covington & Burling as a senior international advisor for Africa, based in Washington, DC. Prior to Covington, Mr. Gast served as assistant administrator for Africa at the United States Agency for International Development. In this role, he oversaw a large and varied portfolio that provided $6.4 billion in assistance to 49 African countries. Mr. Gast’s previous work experience also includes serving as USAID's senior deputy assistant administrator for Africa.

Mr. Gast’s appointment is a significant addition to the firm’s ability to advise corporate clients on entering and expanding their presence in the African market, using his deep experience with African issues to help companies capture the opportunities and navigate the risks in order to achieve their business objectives.

Mr. Gast is available to comment on the following topical issues affecting the business community in Africa and beyond:

Public-private partnerships in infrastructure, energy, and services;

Project finance;

Security risks and risk mitigation; and

Corporate social responsibility.

In September 2012, Covington launched its Africa Practice which is helmed by Dr. Witney Schneidman, a former senior State Department official with more than 30 years of experience in Africa. To date, Covington has experience advising clients on matters involving nearly every country on the African continent. Many of these engagements have related to the continent’s largest economies, including Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Morocco, Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa.