• Thursday, April 18, 2024
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Francophone Africa business summit recommends collaboration, integration to aid commerce

Francophone Africa business

The inaugural Francophone Africa Business Summit (FABS) has recommended increased collaboration, integration within countries in Africa to eliminate barriers against trade and entrepreneurship.

The summit called for a review of obnoxious policies that inhibit trade, free movement of people within the continent to encourage SMEs, entrepreneurship and trade.

Organisers say the 2024 summit with the theme “Investing in Francophone Africa: Playbook and Opportunities,” marked a significant milestone in enhancing business synergies between Anglophone and Francophone Africa.

The summit commenced with a warm welcome address by Johanna Monthe, Managing Partner of Epena Law, followed by an inspiring opening speech by Rolake Akinkugbe-Filani in Victoria Island, Lagos.

The event brought together esteemed speakers and industry specialists from both Anglophone and Francophone African markets to explore pivotal issues and opportunities in sectors critical to Africa’s growth.

One of the highlight panels of the summit, the Institution Panel, delved into the theme of “Crossing Borders & Uniting Markets: Nigeria-Francophone Africa Relations.” Esteemed panelists including Biodun Ogunleye (Commissioner Lagos State Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources), Rock Bashala (Coordinator of the Business Climate Unit, DRC Presidency), and Aissata Lam (Director General, Investment Promotion Agency of Mauritania) engaged in insightful discussions contributing to the discourse on fostering economic collaboration between the regions.

Another engaging panel, the Investment Panel, focused on “Roadmap and Toolkits for Investing in Francophone Sub-Saharan Africa,” featuring distinguished resource persons including Sada Ladan Baki, Group Executive Director Export, Dangote Industries, Serge Thiémélé Chairman of the Board, Phoenix Capital Management, and Solange Amichia, Managing Director, CEPICI, The Investment Promotion Agency of Cote d’Ivoire.

The summit also addressed opportunities for collaboration in agriculture, with the Agriculture panel discussing “Opportunities for Collaborations to Achieve Regional Food Self-Sufficiency.” Ada Osakwe, Founder of Nulli Foods, Wilfrid Korsaga, MD, ARM Agribusiness, and Lucine Hapi, Managing Director, USAID|DRC Investment Activity, shared valuable insights on achieving food self-sufficiency in the region.

Distinguished panels showcased a spectrum of investment avenues, including but not limited to Real Estate & Construction, FMCG & Distribution, Infrastructure, Energy & Natural Resources.

Each session provided valuable insights, fostering constructive dialogue, and catalysing potential partnerships across linguistic and cultural borders.

A notable highlight of the event was the presence of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria, whose insightful and inspiring speech captivated the audience, offering valuable perspectives on driving collective growth and prosperity among African countries.

The Francophone Africa Business Summit (FABS) 2024 proved to be a resounding success, fostering robust business relationships and paving the way for future collaborations between Anglophone and Francophone African markets.

Epena Law subsequently extended its gratitude to all participants, speakers, for their contribution.