The first Africa Day, initiated by the Club des Entrepreneurs Monégasques en Afrique (CEMA) in partnership with the Monaco Economic Board (MEB), which had as its theme "Green & Digital Africa", brought together on Wednesday 29 June some one hundred business leaders at the Monaco Yacht Club.
Welcomed by Mr Frédéric GEERTS, Chairman of CEMA, Mr Frédéric GENTA, Interministerial Delegate for Attractiveness and Digital Transition, opened the event: "Monaco has taken the gamble of a bold Africa!
A debate between leading speakers, including Mr Lionel ZINSOU, former Prime Minister of Benin and Founding Director of Southbridge, and Mr Etienne Giros, speaking as President of Ebcam, on "Africa, State of Play", highlighted the continent's enormous mining and agricultural potential, its growing population and the youth of its workforce. While infrastructure development is a real challenge today, a desire for digital and economic sovereignty is asserting itself.
Economic relations and cooperation between Africa and Monaco were respectively discussed by Mr Guillaume ROSE, Executive Director of the MEB, and Mrs Isabelle ROSABRUNETTO, Director General of the Department of External Relations and Cooperation.
The importance of the African continent, the "lung of the world" for preserving the environment, is reinforced by the dual desire of the historical polluters to monitor their production conditions and to encourage reforestation. The Congo Basin is an example of this, as mentioned by Mr. Olivier MUSHIETE, Director General of the Congolese Institute for Nature Conservation.
The barometer of the business climate in Africa, presented by Ms Sandrine Sorieul, Director General of CIAN (French Council of Investors in Africa), is very encouraging.
The panel moderated by Jean-Michel Huet, surrounded by Stéphane LELUX, Robert AOUAD, Sami TABBANE and Denis RUYANT, experts in digital development in Africa, gave an overview of the deployment of its infrastructures and services and its significant impact on the development of the African continent within the framework of the MDGs.
Mr. Jean CASTELLINI, Minister Counsellor of the Department of Finance and Economy concluded the session by underlining the possibilities of cooperation on sustainable finance.
The Belgian-Luxembourg allied club CBL-ACP and the loyal media partner Afrique Magazine were also present.
Director General of ICCN (Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature en République Démocratique du Congo) He is responsible for thousands of km2 , indirectly.
In view of his dependence on three ministries, he is at the heart of the government's action in the field of nature protection and reforestation.
Appointed to head the Bombo-Lumene Estate and Reserve, a hunting estate and wildlife reserve in the DRC, located on the Bateke Plateau, the agronomist Olivier Mushiete intends to mobilise the necessary resources to achieve his objectives in the management of this site, an ecological bulwark against the demographic pressure that Kinshasa is undergoing, which according to estimates, would reach 12 million souls, with an addition of more or less 350,000 people each year.
Through its members, EBCAM currently represents some 4,000 European companies with interests on the African continent. EBCAM brings together European investors and other operators engaged in economic activities in Africa and works for close cooperation between the European private sector and African countries. EBCAM brings together the main European private sector associations including the Club des Entrepreneurs Monégasques en Afrique (CEMA). Mr. Etienne GIROS is also the President of the French Council of Investors in Africa (CIAN).
Former Prime Minister of Benin from June 2015 to April 2016, he is founder and Managing Partner of SouthBridge, a financial and strategic consulting firm dedicated to the African continent. He is also President of the French social-liberal think-tank, Terra Nova. The CEMA was very proud to hear his comments on the Africa/Monaco convergences
President of CEMA, and Board Member, Senior Adviser of the Rothschild&CO bank in Monaco. He explains the genesis of the project, and the choice of the two themes "Green & Digital Africa".
At a time when we are living in an uncertain economic climate, Africa appears to be a major challenge for the future of Europe... The lung of the world with its forests and the importance of its arable land, this continent, which has a first-rate energy potential, also relies on digital technologies to combine its dynamism with the present. The Club des Entrepreneurs Monégasques en Afrique (CEMA), in partnership with the Monaco Economic Board (MEB) and the Fédération des Entreprises Monégasques (FEDEM), would like to introduce the Principality's business leaders to this bold Africa.
On 29th June, a day of conferences and debates "Africa Day" will be dedicated to environmental issues and digital opportunities for a new Africa, addressed by numerous European and African experts. They will discuss "Green Africa" (reforestation, agribusiness, hydropower, oil & mining...) and the impact of digital technologies on Africa's development (ICT, financial services, e-government, e-services). Thus, the guests will discover the full potential of this continent which will have more than 2 billion inhabitants by 2050, 50% of whom will be under 25 years old.
This initiative is supported by the Monegasque authorities as well as by the French Council of Investors in Africa (CIAN), the European Business Council for Africa (EBCAM), the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture for Belgium, Luxembourg, Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (CBL ACP). At the media level, Afrique Magazine will be a faithful partner of the event.