Putin Seeking Enhanced Collaboration At Russia–Africa Summit

Riyaz Patel

Russian President Vladimir Putin says the upcoming Russia-Africa Economic Forum provides fertile ground to strengthen economic ties across nations.

“I hope that new areas and forms of cooperation will be outlined during the Forum and promising joint initiatives will be put forward that will help take Russian-African collaboration to a whole new level and develop our economies and the prosperity of our people,” said Putin.

The first Russia–Africa Economic Forum is scheduled for 23–24 October 2019, on the sidelines of the Russia–Africa Summit in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi. 

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Putin specifically highlighted the importance of developing cooperation between countries and the positive experience gained from developing joint projects.

“Russian-African relations, which have traditionally been friendly and partner-like, have intensified significantly in recent years both at the bilateral level and in various multilateral formats.”

Positive trends have been seen in trade turnover numbers and in the investment flows, and joint projects are being developed in the extractive industry, agriculture, healthcare, and education.

We have not only managed to preserve the experience gained from fruitful cooperation in the past, but have also achieved new major successes,” he said.

Putin said Russian companies stand ready to offer their African partners their scientific and technological expertise in modernizing energy, transport, and communication infrastructure.

The business programme at the Forum has been structured to focus on three thematic pillars: ‘Forging Economic Ties, Creating Joint Projects and Collaborating in the Humanitarian and Social Sector.’

The Forum will be a strategically important step towards creating favourable conditions for the development of trade and economic relations between Russia and Africa and will also diversify the forms and areas of Russian-African cooperation.

A significant set of trade, economic, and investment agreements is expected to be signed following the conclusion of the Forum.

Participants are also expected to discuss Russia’s agenda in Africa and its promotion, economic sovereignty of African countries, Africa’s role in the international financial system, digital transformation, as well as security and cybersecurity challenges.

A series of events preceded the main Summit.

Moscow hosted the Russia-Africa economic conference in June, and the Russia-Africa parliamentary conference convened on July 3.

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