Egypt brings into Africa 2018 Forum plan to lure investment to Africa

Africa’s key event to work on African Union’s 2063 development strategy

Egypt, which holds the presidency of the African Union for 2019, has put Africa high on this year’s Africa Forum agenda to address new investment opportunities in the continent.

Under the auspices of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Africa Forum will take place in Sharm El-Sheikh on December 7-9, with the theme of “Bold Leadership and Collective Commitment: Advancing Intra-African Investments”.

At the forum, Egyptian officials will introduce a package of new ambitious development reforms aimed at a better future for Africa.

The forum will tackle measures needed to grow investments and achieve economic development in Africa through forming a strong integration between private and public sectors.

The event is expected to attract more than 3,000 delegates representing a wide range of disciplines across Africa and the globe, including heads of states, politicians, and business figures. They will hold in-depth discussions on opportunities to invest in giant projects in Africa along with meetings to form an all-round vision for the future of investment in the continent.

In addition, the forum targets building an advanced economic platform in Africa to drive financial and economic development, assist governments in creating new investment opportunities hinged on innovation, entrepreneurship, and women’s economic inclusion.

Drawing wide participation from worldwide delegates, Africa 2018 Forum will reinforce the country’s position as a regional hub for trade and investment in Africa, said Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr.

As one of the biggest emerging economies in the region, Egypt seeks to play a significant role in ensuring sustainable economic growth in Africa, Nasr added. That’s why the Ministry of Investment was determined to invite chairs and senior executives from key firms and financial institutions across the world to take part in the forum, she explained.

“We are seeking to bring together all the active partnerships, a step aimed at achieving the African Union’s 2063 strategy, the basic framework for the development of the continent,” she explained.

Moreover, Nasr said authorities in Egypt are keen to ensure a more powerful cooperation between African countries in all developmental and investment areas for the prosperity of their people.

At the forum, Egypt will work on promoting global investments to Africa, a home of more than 1.2 billion people, she stated.

The forum will provide unparalleled opportunities for policymakers, financial institutions, and investors in Africa and worldwide to push investments in the continent’s strategic sectors, Nasr concluded.

Meanwhile, Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry said Egypt attaches significant importance to enhancing intra-African integration, being the main vehicle through which it could can fulfil its collective developmental goals and achieve the targets of Africa’s development Agenda 2063.

President Sisi is giving a top priority to boosting Egypt’s investment and economic relations with Africa, Shoukry said.

“Egypt supports the early operationalisation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA). Once in effect, AfCFTA will be one of the largest free trade areas in the world, and will serve as the main platform for galvanising intra-continental trade and investment in Africa.” Minister Shoukry said.

“We also believe that it is crucial to enhance the continent’s infrastructure to achieve the desired economic integration, as the lack of adequate infrastructure, including power and trans-boundary transportation, increases the cost of doing business in Africa and adversely affects its growth.”

In this context, Egypt stresses the need to further enhance Africa’s private sector engagement and augment public-private partnerships to increase infrastructure investment, industrialisation, and developmental projects in Africa, Shoukry added.

Such goals come consistent with the long-established principle of “African solutions to African problems”, which is held dearly in Africa, the minister stated.

From her side, Heba Salama, Head of COMESA Regional Investment Agency, revealed COMESA’s immense pride for organising the Africa Forum for the third consecutive year in cooperation with the Egyptian government and under the patronage of President Sisi.

Hosting the forum rightfully presents Egypt as a strategic gateway to Africa and anchors further its commitment to the continent’s development, Salama said.

An array of exciting and informed speakers will debate areas of great importance to the development of Africa, including energy, trade, tourism, logistics, infrastructure, and creative industries, she added.

Global investment partnerships are also under the spotlight as Africa explores greater collaboration with the international community in realising its goals, Salama concluded.


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