At Business forum in Abidjan
Abidjan, the Ivorian economic capital, hosted the Business forum between West Africa and the European Union, around the theme “Transformation of West African economies through a strengthened partnership between the European and West African private sectors”.
This first Forum between the European and West African private sectors, brought together around 700 participants, drawn from the European and West African private sectors, high-level representatives of political institutions and other stakeholders. .
The Forum provided an opportunity to discuss the need for the development of priority value chains to meet the challenges of the structural transformation of West African economies, but also to forge strong business partnerships between the private sectors of the two regions of a between and between the private sectors and government representatives.
the Business forum took place over two (02) days from June 16 to 17 and was marked by five (05) high-level panels, six (06) round tables, business meetings (B2B and B2G).
Conclusions of the business forum financed by the European Union and organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and the Diaspora in collaboration with the CGECI, we note that five (05) high-level panels furnished the course of the Forum and brought together three (23) panelists. Three (03) panels furnished the first day of the Business forum.
The opening panel focused on the theme “West Africa-European Union Partnership: Let’s Go Together”. This panel provided an opportunity to discuss proposed solutions to strengthen the partnership between the EU and West Africa. In addition, the participants were able to take stock of the partnership between West Africa and the EU countries and give their expectations at the end of this forum in order to explore the development prospects of the European private sectors. and West African.
The second panel made it possible to discuss value chains with high potential for economic transformation in West Africa, in particular on the support to be put in place for the development of these value chains.
The third panel addressed the challenges and opportunities for accessing the markets of the European Union and West African countries within the framework of Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA).
The fourth panel focused on investment opportunities in Côte d’Ivoire, a benchmark country in West Africa, and the fifth provided an opportunity to revisit innovative financing mechanisms for the private sector.
Six (06) round tables were on the program to specifically address some major concerns that can contribute to strengthening cooperation between the two regions. They also made it possible to discuss the development of certain specific value chains.
The three (3) round tables held during the first day had as themes, “the digital economy”, “the investment climate and the tools for bringing together the European and West African private sectors”.
Three other round tables took place today and focused on “Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), construction and the construction and development of sustainable West African cities”.
The B2B sessions allowed participants to have meetings with the aim of building relationships. As for B2G, they allowed participants to find out about the main investment projects carried out by West African States.
In addition to panels and round tables, the Business forum was the occasion for special events, in particular the signing of a protocol between the Mouvement des entreprises de France Internationale (MEDEFI) and the Union of Employers’ Organizations of the Sahel (UPAS) and the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the General Confederation of Enterprises of Côte d’Ivoire (CGECI) and the Public Investment Bank of France (BPI).
The closing ceremony was performed by Kandia Camara, Minister of State, Minister of Foreign Affairs. She was represented by Dr. Méité, Director General of Economic Diplomacy of Côte d’Ivoire. He said he was convinced that the implementation of the recommendations resulting from the work will boost the partnership between the West African and European private sectors and said he was counting on the presidents of the CGECI and Eurocham.
“We remain convinced that the recommendations resulting from the work will be implemented for more win-win partnerships between the West African and European private sectors. I know I can count on the Presidents of the CGECI and EUROCHAM for this purpose”, he concluded.