The second edition of the Russia-Africa Economic Forum: A second year devoted to more development and deepen Russian- African relations


By: Contribution for Syrializm


After the success of the 26th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, last June, the historical Russian city returns and, less than a month later, to host an event no less important than the International Economic Forum.

The Russian-African Summit will begin its second edition at the historic Baltic capital to devote for Russian cooperation with the countries of the African continent.

The work of the second summit of the Russian-African Economic and Humanitarian Forum with Peace, Security and Development will start from the 27 to 28 July 2023.

Undoubtedly, this forum, which has become an annual event since last year, it become a real Russian-African approach, and with all the value and prestige it represents.

It’s the main and largest event, crowning the long-historic Russian-African relations and pushing towards more valuable horizons.

The aim of holding this summit is to achieve a new and qualitative level of partnership and mutual benefit that meets the challenges the world is witnessing today, by strengthening comprehensive cooperation between Russia and the countries of the African continent with all the values and advantages that this continent represents in all its political, security and economic dimensions, in addition to the scientific, technological, cultural and humanitarian fields.

Russia, since the Soviet Union era, was a big aid to many African countries, supporting them to grip of their nations capabilities, and above all help them get their independence from the European colonization.

Some say, Russia is no different from European colonization; however, the fact is Russia doesn’t want what Africa has, because by making small search, you will find out that Russia possess resources from all kind, from mineral, gold, Diamond, gas, oil. Grain etc… you name it.

Russia owns more, and this is why the Russian African cooperation, seeks for helping Africa to be more independence from the old European colonial countries, which basically don’t have resources and wealth in their country in the first place, which is what prompted them to colonize African countries and plunder their wealth, not rather to trade in human beings, and turn them into slaves, and enforcing their culture and values on the African people, starting from the language, all the way to the life style.

However, this plan didn’t succeed, and here is their grip and influence on the continent getting weaker day by day, at a time we witness the emerge of more  African countries on the international arena, which have become an essential and influential part of the international community, and we see today European leaders crawling towards Africa in hope of obtaining gains to change the pity situation, which has reached most of the countries of the European continent.

The Russian-African Economic and Humanitarian Forum, which will be held as part of the second Russian-African summit, is a unique event in Russia’s relations with the countries of the African continent.

In its second year, the forum will devote itself to build on the results achieved by the first forum by diversifying the forms and areas of Russian-African cooperation, as well as determining the horizon and extent of the development of these relations in the long term.

The open discussions of the event’s business program will traditionally address the most pressing issues in the Russian-African agenda, taking into account the widest range of areas covering all areas of Russian-African cooperation, which goes beyond the borders of the economy to various other fields, as it was decided to complete the forum in its second edition with the component of the importance of the human.

As part of the event, a large-scale exhibition will be organized, as well as a platform for business meetings.

As part of the inventory of the results of the first session, the results were a first step in the way of developing and consolidating mutually beneficial relations.

The first edition of the forum, which took place on October 23-24, 2019 in Sochi, held under the slogan “For Peace, Security and Development”.

This event was a historic step in the Russian-African relations, as the countries of the African continent were represented by official delegations and representatives of the business sector, which discussed and identified priority areas of economic cooperation through which tangible results can be achieved in the coming years, and they include important and vital sectors such as conventional energy in addition to this includes areas of renewable energy, infrastructure development, especially in the transportation, railways, housing and mining sectors.

It also occupied the advantages of using advanced technology in enhancing productivity and work in the fields of industry, specifically the mineral and agricultural industries, with what Russia and the African continent represent as the most important regions in the world that enjoy huge stocks of these wealth and materials, and the fact that Russia and its expertise in these fields, the forum comes an opportunity to provide assistance to the countries of the African continent so that they can benefit from their wealth themselves, without falling victim to the exploitation of countries that are accustomed to treating Africans as a source of improper wealth.

The digital technology sector and exploring the horizons of work in this field also constitute an important challenge, in addition to the fields of medicine, scientific research and the education sector, and strengthening the documentation and display of the cultural richness of both Russia and the African continent.

All of these areas represent an urgent need for most countries of the African continent, many of which lack these ingredients, as a result of the historical accumulations, and the remnants of the Western colonial era in general on the countries of the continent, which didn’t make an effort to develop those countries, but on the contrary, the endeavor of the colonial countries was confined only in stealing the continent’s wealth and control its capabilities, without offering anything valuable in return.

The African people realize their value and the value of their continent, therefore, status and potential was a decisive factor for the revolution against the power of Western colonialism, as the countries of the continent continued their quest for growth and development, with the need to search for friends and allies in the world to build relations based on the foundations of mutual benefit and mutual respect.


The organizer of the summit

The Summit and the Forum are organized by the Roskongress Foundation, which is a socially oriented, non-profit, developmental foundation.

Roskongress is the largest organizer of international events, conferences, exhibitions and public events, and tasked with organizing various forums and international events in Russia.

The Roscongress Foundation was established in 2007 to promote the development of economic potential, national interests and the image of Russia in the world.

The Foundation studies, analyzes, shapes and covers issues related to the Russian and world economic agendas.

It also provides management and assistance in promoting business projects, attracting investment, and promotes the development of social and charitable projects.

The Foundation’s activities bring together participants from 208 Russian countries and regions.

More than 15,000 media representatives work annually in Roscongress sites, and more than 2,500 experts from Russia and the world participate in specialized analysis work.

Interaction is also linked with foreign economic partners, associations of industrialists, businessmen and financial associations and business in 107 countries in the world.


The first edition… a success consecrated by momentum of participation

More than 6,000 participants and media representatives from Russia and 104 foreign countries and regions attended the summit and the first Russia-Africa Economic Forum, including more than 1,100 representatives of the international business community and about 1,400 representatives of the Russian business sector, in addition to more than 1,900 representatives of foreign official delegations and more than 300 official representatives from Russia.

Official representatives of all 54 African countries participated in the proceedings of the first Russian-African Economic Summit and Forum, 45 of which were represented by Heads of State (Algeria, Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Cape Verde, Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya and Libya, Mauritius, Mauritania, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Morocco, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Seychelles, Senegal, Somalia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Central African Republic, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Eswatini, South Africa, South Sudan, Gabon, Tanzania and Ethiopia).

The forum was also attended by the heads of 8 African regional organizations, which are the African Union, the African Export and Import Bank, the East African Group, the Group of Five African Sahel States, the Arab Maghreb Union, the Southern African Development Group, the Economic Community of Central African States, and the Economic Community of West African States.

The forum was attended by 109 foreign ministers from African countries and two vice-presidents of the Republic of Liberia and the Republic of Burundi.

Among the prominent representatives of foreign and Russian business circles, the forum was attended by the President of Unitel SA, Isabel José dos Santos, from Angola, the CEO of Gemcorp Capital LLP, Atanas Bostangiyev, UK, the head of the Russian joint-stock company Transmashholding, Andrei Bukaryov and director General and Chairman of the Board of Directors of KAMAZ PJSC Sergey Kogonin, Chairman of the Board of Directors of PJSC Uralchem Dmitry Mazepin, Chairman of the Board of Directors of PJSC Lukoil Vagit Alkabirov.

Also participating in the forum were the head of the media group, Naspers Ltd, Bob van Dijk, and its CEO, Foti Makhaneli-Dabinafa, from the Republic of South Africa, and the head of the Egyptian Railways Authority, Ashraf Mohamed Raslan Shalaby, and the CEO of MYA Energy SARL, Alaoui Moulay Youssef, From the Kingdom of Morocco, and CEO of CalBank Limited, Addo J. Franc, Ghana, CEO of Centurion LLP, NG Martin Mba Ayuk, Republic of South Africa, and CEO of C-Nergy Ghana Limited, Michael Kublah.

Among the official participants from Russia, a group of Russian politicians and ministers attended, including the Russian Deputy Prime Minister and Presidential Plenipotentiary in the Eastern Russian Federal District, Yuri Trutnev, and the Presidential Plenipotentiary in the Southern Russian Federal District, Vladimir Ustinov, in addition to the Ministers of Health and Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Science and Education Higher, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Industry and Trade, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Construction, Housing and Community Services, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media, Ministry of Economic Development, Ministry of Energy.

The forum was also attended by 7 heads of the Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation, the Service for Supervising Consumer Rights Protection and Population Welfare, the Maritime and River Transport Agency, the Agency for Nationalities Affairs and the Federal Agency for CIS Affairs – Citizens Residing Outside Russia and Humanitarian Cooperation, in addition to the Agency for the Exploitation of Subsoil Resources, land and the Federal Fisheries Management Agency.


Numbers speak for the results

The work program of the Russian-African Forum was based on discussions on the possibilities of developing cooperation and interaction in the African continent, where the discussion of launching cooperation potentials was at the forefront of the agenda.

The figures in Russia speak of the volume of trade exchange between Russia and the countries of the African continent.

Over the past five years, the volume of trade exchange between Russia and Africa has more than doubled to exceed $20 billion, of which $7.7 billion is the volume of trade exchange with Egypt alone.

Therefore, it was a top priority for the forum to raise the volume of trade exchange above these figures, in proportion to with the value represented by Russia and the countries of the African continent.

The summit and the first Russian-African Economic Forum succeeded in signing 92 documents of agreements, contracts and memorandums of understanding, with the total value of these contracts and agreements reaching 1.04 trillion rubles (13.77 billion US dollars).

These agreements and contracts include industrial fields, fields of import and export, foreign economic activity, international cooperation, advanced technology, transportation, logistics, mining, exploration, investment, and banking services.

Doubling the volume of trade exchange between Russia and the countries of the African continent is a goal and a great challenge given the common capabilities available, especially since six of the ten most dynamic economies in the world are located on the African continent.


Forum side activities and media

Among the most important side activities of the forum in its first edition was the exhibition that opened, where the works of various sectors of the Russian economy presented in the fields of agriculture, heavy and light engineering, military and civilian equipment, and other sectors.

The Russian Export Center also organized an exhibition in which Rosatom presented renewable energy sources.

The Russian joint stock company, Transmashholding, also introduced modern developments in the field of passenger transport from modern railway buses.

The Russian Gaz Group also presented modern models of automotive equipment, including mobile medical stations.

The organizer of the forum, the Roscongress Foundation, in cooperation with Gazprom company, organized an exhibition of innovations, where 14 high-tech Russian companies presented their projects of drinking water supply systems, biological fertilizers, Internet service providers, telemedicine, and an exhibition of products of the military-industrial complex was organized.

A number of African countries, represented by their production companies, also presented the Republic of Djibouti, which offered modern logistical platforms, and companies from Kenya and the Congo presented their various products, as well as the Royal Air Maroc presented a distinguished presentation of its services.

In addition to the exhibition, the cooking and food festival was held, where the “Discover Russian Cuisine” festival was held, and a group of chefs from Luxembourg, France, Belgium and Russia opened the diverse food festival.

In addition, commemorative coins of the Bank of Russia exhibited and sold; new technologies for producing coins from composite materials, as well as printing banknotes were presented.

The Forum was covered by about 800 media representatives from Russia, Algeria, Angola, Belgium, Burkina Faso, United Kingdom, Ghana, Guinea, Germany, Djibouti, Egypt, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Spain, Italy, Cameroon, Qatar, Kenya, China, Congo Brazzaville, Congo-Kinshasa, Ivory Coast, Mauritania, Malawi, Mali, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates, Portugal, Senegal, United States of America, Togo, Tunisia, Turkiye, Uganda, France, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Isfatini , Ethiopia, South Africa, Japan.

Also, 650 volunteers who spoke English, French, Arabic, Portuguese and Spanish from several Russian cities participated.

In conclusion, and based on the results of the past year, the Russian-African Forum constitutes one of the pillars of building a new world based on new foundations and concepts based on a multipolar world, with independence in decision-making and the dedication and sustainability of the growth of the economies of developing countries, and here the African continent represents the summit among these countries.

The increasing international endeavor towards creating a new economic world away from exploitation, pressure and blackmail, and leaving room for countries to increase the independence of their decision, especially economic, and this assembly comes as a nucleus of Eurasian-African cooperation that can be integrated with other groupings such as the Shanghai group and BRICS.

Therefore, the continuity of such an occasion will increase the chances of development and liberation from a long-standing restriction, and the time has come for liberation from it for a world that is supposed to be more just.

Share it...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *