Bee Company forum in Abidjan
Abidjan, the Ivorian economic capital, organized the Company forum between West Africa and the European Union, on the theme “Transformation of West African economies through a strengthened partnership between the European and West African private sectors”.
This first European-West African private sector forum brought together approximately 700 participants from the European and West African private sector, high-level representatives of political institutions and other stakeholders.
The forum made it possible to discuss the need to develop priority value chains to meet the challenges of the structural transformation of the West African economies, but also to forge solid business partnerships between the private sectors of the two regions of part and, between the private sector and government representatives.
the Company forum took place over two (02) days from June 16-17 and featured five (05) high-level panels, six (06) roundtables, business meetings (B2B and B2G).
Conclusions of the European Union-funded Business Forum organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and the Diaspora in collaboration with the CGECIA, it should be noted that five (05) high-level panels formed the course of the Forum, bringing together twenty-three (23) panelists. Three (03) panels furnished the first day of the Company forum†
The opening panel focused on the theme “West Africa-European Union Partnership: Let’s Go Together”. This panel provided the opportunity to discuss proposed solutions to strengthen the partnership between the EU and West Africa. Moreover, at the end of this forum, the participants were able to take stock of the partnership between West Africa and the EU countries and express their expectations to explore the prospects for the development of the European private sector and West Africa.
The second panel made it possible to discuss value chains with high potential for economic transformation in West Africa, in particular about the support to be provided for the development of these value chains.
The third panel discussed the challenges and opportunities for accessing the markets of the European Union and West African countries under Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs).
The fourth panel focused on investment opportunities in Côte d’Ivoire, a reference country in West Africa, and the fifth provided an opportunity to rethink innovative financing mechanisms for the private sector.
Six (06) round tables were scheduled and allowed to specifically address certain major issues that could 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) roundtables held during the first day focused on the themes “the digital economy”, “the investment climate and the tools to bring the European and West African private sectors together”.
Three other roundtables 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 the participants to meet with the aim of building relationships. As for the B2G, they informed the participants about the main investment projects carried out by the states of West Africa.
In addition to panels and round tables, Company 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 from Ivory Coast (CGECIA) and the Public Investment Bank of France (BPIA†
The closing ceremony was chaired 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 would strengthen the partnership between the West African and European private sectors and said he was counting on the chairmen of the CGECIA and Eurocham.
“We remain confident that the recommendations arising from the work will be implemented for more win-win partnerships between the West African and European private sector. I know I can count on the presidents of the CGECIA and EUROCHAM for this purpose,” he concluded.