EIC on the 7th EU-Africa Business Forum (EABF)

16 February 2022

The events co-organised by EIC during the 7th EU Africa Business Forum 2022 in February 2022, attracted more than 350 viewers and triggered an intense discussion in the Forum’s chat. EIC’s Roundtable as well as the High-Level Panel on Infrastructure and Connectivity – attended by EIC President Benoît Chauvin – provided ample opportunity for EIC to voice its recommendations with respect to the EU’s Global Gateway strategy to the highest level of the European Commission.

EIC President Benoît Chauvin was invited to join a High-Level Event on Infrastructure and Connectivity alongside EU Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen, and AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, Amani Abou-Zeid. Mr. Chauvin stressed the need and the opportunity to develop Global Gateway into a powerful and efficient financing tool that overcomes the fragmentation of EU development cooperation, e.g. by following the Japanese example providing for a close collaboration between the government and various official financing institutions to promote quality infrastructure. In addition, the EIC President advocated a stronger local presence of European companies and financiers in Africa as well as a total lifecycle approach for infrastructure development translating into long-term contracts, including operation and maintenance.

EIC also organised a roundtable entitled “Towards an Africa-Europe Partnership for Sustainable Governance” which was attended by representatives from Africa50, AUDA-NEPAD, the European Commission, the European Investment Bank as well as EIC member companies.

 The main take-aways of our Roundtable were:

  • Improve predictability of the project pipeline and public-private sector collaboration;
  • Adapt the concept of bankability for the African context;
  • Streamline the approval and disbursement process within ‘Team Europe’ to increase project pace without, however, compromising the sustainability aspects (which are part of the European DNA and value proposition) and
  • Catalyse private investment through insurance mechanisms and risk mitigation tools.

EIC will continue the discussion in the frame of the EIC-EFCA Webinar on 11 March 2022 and the EIC Spring Conference on 28/29 April 2022 in Lisbon.