Africa Day enhances relations between the 2 continents

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in the framework of the Bled Strategic Forum and under the auspices of the President of the Republic of Slovenia, is hosting the 7th international Africa Day Conference in Ljubljana on 14  and 15 May 2018. The Conference will be held in cooperation with the Club of Former Slovenian Ambassadors, the International Center for Promotion of Enterprises (ICPE) and the International African Forum. Day one will be organised in partnership with Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs. The Conference, first organised in 2012, marks the anniversary of the Organisation of African Unity/African Union.

The Conference  is intended to enhance bilateral relations and cooperation between African countries and Slovenia. It will begin with an opening ceremony, where participants will be addressed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Karl Erjavec. The event will continue with the addresses by the Gambian Foreign Minister, Mr Ousainou Darboe, and by high-level representatives of participating states and organisations.

The programme on Day One is intended to improve policy outcomes for citizens in Europe and Africa as a result of a deeper understanding and strengthened cooperation between the two continents. The focus will be on African and European cooperation on governance, identified at the 5th AU-EU summit in Abidjan last November as one of the four strategic areas of the EU-Africa partnership.

Slovenia would like to enhance bilateral relations with African partners, particularly in the economy. African countries are rapidly introducing structural changes, upgrading infrastructure, enhancing environmentally sustainable industrial production and striving for better digital connectivity. The transition which African countries are undergoing has great potential for cooperation, and Slovenia can provide answers and solutions to the specific needs of African partners in various spheres, this is why Day Two will be dedicated to business opportunities and strengthening economic cooperation between African countries and Slovenia. Selected African countries will present economic and investment opportunities in their markets. In addition, Slovenian representatives will outline the Slovenian economy and know-how, and in the afternoon, there will be group visits to selected Slovenian companies.

The Conference will be attended by representatives of the political, business, academic and cultural spheres from European and African countries, members of the diplomatic corps and representatives of international organisations, but it is also open to the wider public.

The themes of the panel discussions:
1. Trust and Governance in a Changing Global Order: Building Inclusive and Accountable Institutions for Sustainable Development
2. Africa-EU Partnership in Practice: Areas for Exchange and Cooperation in Support of Good Governance
3. Synergies for Scaling Up: European and African Cooperation in the Setting of Global Standards

The accompanying cultural and academic programme taking place on the sidelines of the conference will be prepared in cooperation with the Municipality of Ljubljana, the Slovene Ethnographic Museum, the ‘Konzorcij’ bookshop and members of the African diaspora.

More information about the event can be found at the website of the Slovenian Foreign Ministry.

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