Under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice-President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry is organising the 2nd Africa Global Business Forum (AGBF), New Realities – New Connections, on October 1 and 2 at Atlantis The Palm.
With content developed by The Economist Events, this year’s Forum follows last year’s highly successful inaugural event and will explore new business partnerships and opportunities arising between Africa and Dubai. It will also highlight the strategic role of Dubai as a world-class hub in connecting Africa with international investors.
A panel of government leaders and investors will discuss what needs to change to attract more private-sector financing into Africa’s infrastructure and what African governments can learn from Dubai’s experience in rapidly developing infrastructure.
The forum will also explore the future of trade and investment linkages between African markets and the rest of the world, outlining the hubs and networks that will shape the global economy over the next few decades.
Attendees will be able to hear case studies on operating in Africa from Samsung and Blackstone as well as discuss plans and realities of building large African free-trade zone with the heads of the African Union and Economic Blocs.
Other topics that will be discussed include: rise of African consumer, Africa’s new multinationals and when we can expect to see the first Fortune-500 company from the continent, ways African nations can use the Dubai Expo 2020 to present themselves to the world and many more.
The AGBF’s objective is to facilitate a high-level dialogue and advice on key strategic directives related to Africa’s economic outlook.
With Dubai becoming a significant investor across Africa, ABGF will highlight the advantages for African entrepreneurs to access global markets in Dubai while providing international investors a strategically important centre for their African operations.
In its strategy of expanding into the African continent, Dubai has become a major trading partner for the region as the emirate’s non-oil trade with the continent increased by 141%, up from AED 37.9 billion in 2008 to AED 91.3 billion in 2013.
The list of Dubai’s non-oil trade partners in Africa last year was topped by Egypt followed by Libya, Sudan, Ghana, Mali, Tanzania, Nigeria, Kenya, Algeria, DRC, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, Senegal, Morocco and Djibouti.
H.E. Hamad Buamim, President & CEO, Dubai Chamber, said: “Hosting the Africa Global Business Forum for a second year is major signal of Dubai’s intention to develop stronger ties with Africa. Dubai is a gateway for business in Africa with excellent connectivity and a stable and competitive business environment that is open to foreign investment.
“Dubai Chamber is pursuing a strategy of international expansion which supports our African connection. We already have a presence in Ethiopia and will open another office in Ghana later this year to serve West Africa. We also have plans for Mozambique, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda and Angola,” H.E. Buamim said.
AGBF is by invitation only and will bring together an exclusive audience of 500 top government officials and corporate decision-makers from around the world. The inaugural event in 2013 gathered over 30 high-profile African government ministers along with 3,500 delegates from 86 countries.
According to World Bank estimates, the African continent is in need of USD 93 billion annually for its infrastructure investments leading to the year 2020 while only one-third of this amount which is USD 31 billion per annum is currently available with the African governments.