Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Friday, July 10, 2015

European Investment Bank Africa Day 2015

Plenary Session Internationalisation of African Businesses
9 July 2015. European Investment Bank Africa Day 2015. European Investment Bank President

Werner Hoyer, in cooperation with Luxembourg’s Presidency of the European Union, hosted the EIB Africa Day. On this occasion, the Bank welcomed

  • Phil Hogan, European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Romain Schneider, 
  • Minister for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid, Luxembourg and 
  • Donald Kaberuka, President of the African Development Bank.

High level speakers from Europe as well as Africa shared their experience of doing business on the continent, across several sectors and from various backgrounds.

See conference programme EN

Panel on the Internationalisation of African Businesses
Extract of the programme: Breakout-session 2 - Agri-Business 
Africa is perceived to have a large potential in agriculture. It should have the resources to feed its growing population and able to export to Europe and other continents.

Yet there are persistent inefficiencies in agricultural value chains leading to low revenues, low productivity and high postharvest losses and ultimately low competitiveness with imported commodities like rice and sugar.

There are only few examples of local processing, in particular when it comes to cash-crops like cocoa, coffee, cotton or sugar.

What are the main opportunities out there? What can work? What is
from left to right: Mr Kees Verbeek, Rabobank Netherlands;
Mr Carl Heinrich Bruhn, Amatheon Agri Holding; Ms
Judith Helfmann-Hundack, German-African
Business Association;
Mr Mamadou Cissokho, ROPPA, Burkina Faso;
Ms Sabine Kontos, Penta Flowers
the relevance of technology innovation and quality standards? To what extent can agri-business contribute to enhance African industrialization?
  • Agri-Business Moderator: Judith Helfmann-Hundack, Director, German-African Business Association 
  •  Keynote address: Li Yong, Director General, United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) 
Panel discussion:
  • Carl Heinrich Bruhn, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Amatheon Agri Holding, Germany
  • Sabine Kontos, Chief Executive Officer, Penta Flowers, Kenya 
  • Kees Verbeek, Senior Relationship Banker Africa, Rabobank, The Netherlands 
  • Mamadou Cissokho, Honorary President, Network of Farmers and Agricultural Producers Organizations (ROPPA), Burkina Faso
Related: blog of Phil Hogan, European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development
3 July 2015. This week saw my second trip to Expo Milano since its opening where I had the chance to visit even more pavilions. Beginning my visit at the EU pavilion I was welcomed at a reception of agri-food stakeholders. Expo is a real window of opportunity to communicate with citizens, foster global research and stimulate a meaningful policy debate. During my time there I also stopped by the pavilions for China, Uganda, Japan, Morocco and Colombia and took the opportunity to experience the fantastic food and drink products being produced all over the world.

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