By Kennedy Nnamani
THE Department for International Trade, DIT, of the United Kingdoms on Wednesday, January 20, hosted the second African Investment Conference, AIC, with focus on sustainable investment to support the continent’s transition to clean growth. The conference also perused the importance of resilient, sustainable investment to support Africa as it pivots towards a more environmentally-friendly growth trajectory.
The conference, which was also aimed at strengthening UK and African business relationships, was declared open by Boris Johnson, the British prime minister who stated that the UK is Africa’s investment partner of choice for green transition.
The virtual meeting which witnessed the presence of Wamkele Mene, secretary general of African Continental Free Trade Area, AfCFTA, Vera Songwe, Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa, United Nations, Lord Grimstone, UK Minister for Investment, Vicky Ford MP, UK Minister for Africa, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the director-general of the World Trade Organization, WTO, business leaders, was to boost economic cooperation with African nations and enhance the role of UK as the continent’s investment partner of choice for greener, climate-friendly projects.
Meanwhile, in a press release from the DIT, the UK government said it launched Growth Gateway tool to strengthen UK and African business relationships, following a significantly increased support for markets in Africa in the past year from approximately £600 million in 2018-19 to over £2.3 billion in 2020-21, supporting a range of infrastructure projects in countries from Côte d’Ivoire to Uganda.
Lord Grimstone of Boscobel Kt, UK Department for International Trade, in his closing remark called for investment proposals from African businesses and projects.
“We want to hear from African capital seekers with opportunities that meet investors’ requirements. If your opportunity fits the bill, do head to the Investment DealRoom’s exhibitor space for more information on submitting a proposal. Alternatively, you can go directly to the companies’ page on the DealRoom website”, he stated.
Expressing his joy for the conference, Grimstone re echoed the need for actions from the conference.
“It would be fantastic if connections made today could lead to investment in the future. I hope this conference has showcased just how the UK and Africa can continue to grow our trade and investment partnership and we look forward absolutely to supporting this in the year ahead”, he said.
KNTags: African Investment Conference Boris Johnson Department for International Trade Kennedy Nnamani Lord Grimstone Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Vera Songwe Vicky Ford MP Wamkele Mene