The European Business Council for Africa

African-European online hackathon program to find innovative solutions to socio-economic problems that have been further escalated by the outburst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

When we first started  #euafricathejourney,  we never thought that we would meet that many amazing and inspiring people along the way. That is why we decided, that on top of the hackathon we will also put together an online conference- with many of these wonderful people featured as speakers. Have a look at the agenda and book your calendars for  4 days of inspiring talks and discussions on the topics of education, food security, job security, vulnerable populations, health and wellness, financial services, big data, cybersecurity, digital economy, e-Governance, and smart cities. All available online and free!

About this Event

Why you should attend

Published every year by African Export-Import Bank(Afreximbank), the African Trade Report is one of the key publications to understand Trade in the African continent. Ahead of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, the need to understand the various drivers of trade has never been more pressing.

This event will offer unique insights into:

  • The contents and findings of the 2020 African Trade Report
  • What will be the long term consequences of COVID-19 on Trade
  • The importance of Informal Cross Border Trade 
  • AfCTA and overall impact on intra-continental and intra-regional Trade

Don’t miss the launch of the African Research Initiative for Scientific Excellence (ARISE) Pilot Programme a novel pan-African instrument to support scientific excellence with a European support of €25 million from the EU’s Development Cooperation Instrument. The pilot programme aims to enhance the conditions in which African knowledge is created and disseminated, and to make the African research ecosystem less vulnerable to brain drain. Speakers include:
  • Jutta Urpilainen, European Commissioner for International Partnerships
  • Sarah Anyang Agbor, African Union Commissioner of Human Resources, Science and Technology
  • Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth and European Young Leader (EYL40)
  • Isayvani Naicker, Director Strategy and Partnerships at African Academy of Sciences
  • Sandra Kramer, Director of EU-AU relations, West and East Africa, European Commission Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development (DEVCO)
  • Maria Cristina Russo, Director of International Cooperation, European Commission Directorate General for Research and Innovation


World’s struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic continues, particularly in preventing its further spread and ensuring access to affordable medical products, such as diagnostic kits, personal protective equipment (PPEs), ventilators and also upcoming vaccines and medicines, which can prevent and cure the disease. In order to enhance such access to healthcare, ex ante competition policy can be used as a viable tool, in addition to competition law enforcement.

Competition policy, here denotes, pro-competition government policies, including industrial policy. In the context of access to medical products through competition, a pro-competition intellectual property (IP) policy becomes crucial. For instance, domestic IP laws incorporating flexibilities enshrined in the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is more likely to engender generic competition in pharmaceutical markets. India’s example can be cited here, which, inter alia, deals with the anti-competitive menace of ‘evergreening’ by having a narrow patentability criteria allowed under TRIPs.

Health security is no longer a single country agenda. It is now clear that to be effective, sustainable and more progressive in strengthening global health security and building resilience – particularly in Africa – there needs to be more collaboration, connectivity and deliberate information exchange.

This high-level virtual event will serve as the launch of CCA's new Health Security and Resilience Initiative, which will bring together U.S. and African business executives and senior government officials including Ministers of Health, as well as leaders from multilateral institutions. This event will showcase CCA's vision for the initiative and explore the policy lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and inform a path forward for U.S.-Africa collaboration on health security and resilience on the continent.

Speakers will look both behind and ahead at lessons learned, best practices and policies that support enhanced healthcare financing and strengthening service delivery for improved disease response and management preparedness, implementation of Universal Health Coverage and increased trade and investment in Africa's health sector. 

Attendees will include CCA members and non-members, African Dip Corps, USG, African Govts, Africa health sector stakeholders including multilateral institutions and multi-donor initiatives.

  The U.S.-AUC Business Forum on the AfCFTA will be held on December 8, 2020, on the margins of the December 5, 2020, African Union (AU) Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and ahead of the January 2021 start of Phase I trade under AfCFTA.
  The Forum is intended to provide a platform for dialogue for U.S. and African public and private sector leaders on supporting African regional integration and U.S.-Africa commercial engagement through the AfCFTA.
Event Information
  • Session I is a high-level panel of U.S. and African public and private sector leaders. Session II covers technical issues related to Phase I trade.
  • Speakers: Albert Muchanga, AU Commissioner for Trade and Industry; Constance Hamilton, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Africa.
  • Speakers: Jessye Lapenn, U.S. Ambassador to the AU; Scott Eisner, President, U.S.-Africa Business Center; Florie Liser, President, Corporate Council on Africa.
  • Speakers: Camille Richardson, Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Middle East and Africa, International Trade Administration; and the AfCFTA Secretariat Staff.

This event will focus on technology transfer, knowledge exchange, investment opportunities and sustainable development between norwegian and african businesses. The aim is to create an enabling environment for technology seekers and technology providers to come together and do business.  

Agriculture remains a dominant sector of the economy contributing to a much extent in the East African gross domestic product. Food production is especially critical in Africa, where over 70% of the population rely on agriculture for their livelihoods. However, a fair share of challenges hit the sector including post-harvest losses, strained resources (land, labour, farm inputs, water), climate change, market access, pest and diseases, to mention a few. Technology could drive greater engagement in agriculture from women and young people and support employment opportunities along the agricultural value chain. Renewable energy is a key part of the infrastructure required to successfully roll out the much-needed disruptive technology.

The Ambassadorial Roundtable, a global organisation focused on connecting business leaders, investment capital, academia, cybersecurity, IT, and economic resources to international governments, is organising an interactive discussion panel on the Europe-Africa partnership focusing on development opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The panel discussion will develop various topics such as Covid Pandemic, Climate Change, Renewable Energies, Sustainable Development, Employment and Job Creation, Security and Conflict Resolution, Educational Cooperation.

On 8 December, 16:00-17:30 CET, ECDPM and ETTG are organising the workshop ‘Programming the NDICI in a post-COVID era’.  The main objective of the event is to take stock of the progress made with regard to the negotiations of the NDICI and outstanding issues to be solved, as well as to discuss key principles for the programming of the instrument for the period 2021-2027. We would like to use this as an opportunity to facilitate an open discussion between representatives of the EU institutions, think tanks and civil society organisations.

On Tuesday 15th December, ECDPM’s Sean Woolfrey will participate in the roundtable discussion on ‘The African Free Trade Area and the Role of External Partners’ during Potsdam Winter Dialogues 2020.

African and European experts from government, business, academia and civil society will join in the discussions at the two-day international conference, with a particular focus on the following:

• How can the African Continental Free Trade Area help to strengthen recovery and build more economic resilience in Africa?
• What can be done to create a coherent African continental trade regime that benefits as many countries and communities as possible?
• Which specific policy measures and regulatory strategies can avert negative impacts, e.g. on employment and food security, in lower-income countries?
• How can international partners, meaning the EU first and foremost, facilitate and support these efforts?