The European Business Council for Africa

Vienna summit


Austria is holding the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union in the second half of 2018. In line with the conclusions of the European Council of June 28 2018, Europe needs to take the extent and the quality of its cooperation with Africa to a new level, moving beyond focusing on migration as a common challenge. Austria wants to contribute to this aim.

President Kagame of Rwanda is the Chairman of the African Union for 2018. As an advocate for the advancement of an African single digital market, he has emphasised that a pathway to prosperity for all Africans, especially young people, can only be achieved by infusing African economies with technology and by collaborating with Africa’s private sector.

Therefore, President Kagame and Chancellor Kurz have decided to call for a High-Level Forumto provide a space for European and African leaders, together with CEOs of major global companies, innovation champions, start-ups and other stakeholders, to reflect and act on what needs to be done to secure prosperity and competitiveness on both continents as well as to deepen the relationship in all its aspects with a specific focus on taking our cooperation to the digital age. The forum takes place in Vienna, Austria on December 18 2018.

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Vienna EBCAM


EBCAM Members,

Christoph Kannengiesser (Africa Verein), Alexandros Spachis (Secretary General of EBCAM), Etienne Giros (President of EBCAM and CIAN member)



UNCTAD to hold landmark conference on e-commerce in Africa, for Africa

Africa eCommerce Week
Nairobi, Kenya, 10-14 December

Geneva, 4 December 2018 – Digitization is bringing new opportunities to Africa. Across the continent, new digital businesses are emerging rapidly and growing fast. But with Africa also epitomizing the digital divide between the connected and the unconnected, it is critical to seize the chance to drive development for African economies and their populations, so that no-one is left behind.

As the United Nations body responsible for helping leverage trade to deliver development, UNCTAD is next week organizing the debut edition of Africa eCommerce Week. The 10-14 December conference in Nairobi is the first regional incarnation of UNCTAD’s global eCommerce Week, held annually in Geneva.

Under the theme “Empowering African Economies in the Digital Era”, Africa eCommerce Week is a response to the growing demand for e-commerce dialogues, as the digital and mobile revolution continues apace.

It comes at an opportune moment, given that the international community, regional organizations, and individual countries are exploring ways to advance development gains from the digital economy and thereby help achieve the ambition of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Moreover, the landmark African Continental Free Trade Agreement, signed in March this year, is expected to have a positive impact on intra-African trade. As trade increasingly moves online, there is a growing need to discuss the implications of e-commerce for African economies.

“Turning this tremendous opportunity into inclusive development requires a massive effort on the part of all of us – in Africa and beyond,” said UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi.

“We are at critical juncture – and that it is why UNCTAD decided to have a meeting in Africa, for Africa and by Africa, focused on harnessing the potential of digitalization and the mobile revolution.”

For more on why these issues matter, both for Africa and more widely for development, you can read a recent op-ed by Dr. Kituyi here, and a series of posts by him and other authors in the UNCTAD Dialogue on African Development and the Digital Economy.

Africa eCommerce Week, which will take place at the United Nations Office in Nairobi, is co-organized by the African Union and the European Union. Hosted by the Government of Kenya, it is part of joint efforts by partners in the eTrade for all initiative.

More than 1,000 participants from 48 countries are scheduled to head to the event to share their experiences and success stories for leveraging e-commerce for the development of African economies.

Senior political leaders will be joined by representatives of 330 businesses, including 50 CEOs and other entrepreneurs from start-ups and small and medium-sized enterprises, among them African graduates of the eFounders Initiative facilitated by UNCTAD. Also taking part will be civil society delegates and officials from more than 20 international organizations, and eTrade for all partners.

Conference sessions will tackle the following challenges:

Accelerating the e-trade readiness of African countries
Expanding access to affordable and reliable ICT infrastructure and services
Fostering skills for the digital economy
Boosting financial inclusion through mobile money
Improving access to finance for digital entrepreneurs

Other questions will include online trust – how to divide the good, the illicit, and the mislabeled – taxation in the digital economy, consumer protection, a single window at the borders, e-commerce and commodity dependence, trade logistics, digital identity, and much more.

UNCTAD will also launch its new UNCTAD B2C E-Commerce Index 2018 – Focus on Africa during the conference, and there will be plenty of opportunities for the media to interact with participants, including press conferences, for which a schedule will follow.

For media attending the conference, there will be a dedicated space at the conference venue, and twice-daily shuttle service from central Nairobi, details of which will be made available beforehand.

Registration is free but required in order to attend. Please click here for more details, and here for other practical information.

To help navigate the conference, UNCTAD has created an event app that can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play. Please note that the app’s networking function is only available to registered conference participants.

Presidential, legislative and provincial elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are scheduled to take place on 23 December 2018, following a two-year lapse since the expiration of President Joseph Kabila’s mandate. Given the country’s constitutional crisis, widespread insecurity and humanitarian crisis, the upcoming elections hold high stakes for the people of the DRC. The polls could potentially bring about the country’s first democratic transfer of power, but they also risk further destabilisation if electoral credibility is undermined. Understanding the DRC’s complex political landscape, regional dynamics and root causes of conflict is crucial for domestic and international actors to support a viable election process and future for the DRC.

The Africa Programme, with the support of the Open Society Foundations, is hosting a series of events assessing specific dynamics and challenges, in support of preparing responses to issues and post-election engagement.

click on the following links for more information about these events

Corporate Council on Africa (CCA)
and the U.S. Mission to the African Union
U.S.-Africa Forum on Trade and Investment
February 12, 2019
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Sheraton Hotel

Organised by the Sahel and West Africa Club Secretariat (SWAC/OECD), the Sahel and West Africa Week is an annual meeting for dialogue and knowledge-sharing on food issues. It has become “the place to be” for the region’s development stakeholders for informal exchange, networking and building partnerships. Bringing together some 300 participants every year in a different West African country, it is the OECD’s largest event on the African continent. Hosted by the Government of The Gambia under the aegis of ECOWAS and UEMOA, the 2018 edition will take place at the Labranda Coral Beach Hotel. Read the Welcome words by the SWAC president.

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The UNCTAD World Investment Forum is the pre-eminent global platform for investment and development.

The forum devises strategies and solutions for global investment and development challenges. It facilitates multi-stakeholder collective action to stimulate investment in development.

It offers a unique opportunity to influence investment-related policymaking, shape the global investment environment, and to network with global leaders in business and politics.


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A special event
Achieving accelerated structural transformation in Eastern Africa:
Policy ideas from two United Nations bodies



Geneva, 21 and 22 June 2018
Room XIV




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The UNCTAD World Investment Forum is the pre-eminent global platform for investment and development. The Forum devises strategies and solutions for global investment and development challenges. It facilitates multi-stakeholder collective action to stimulate investment in development. The Forum offers a unique opportunity to influence investment-related policymaking, shape the global investment environment, and to network with global leaders in business and politics.

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This event is the premier multi-stakeholder platform for integrating corporate responsibility questions into the global economic agenda. More than 800 representatives of government, business, trade unions and civil society will come together at the 6th Global Forum in Paris to provide insights and exchange views on how to do well while doing no harm in an effort to contribute to sustainable development and enduring social progress.

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For its twelfth edition, EDD 2018 will aim at bringing together the European Union's commitment to gender equality and women's empowerment with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Gender equality and women empowerment are at the core of European values and enshrined within the EU's legal and political framework. This is why the event will focus on the vital role of women and the need for their full and equal participation and leadership in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

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