A two-day forum between representatives of the European Union and Sub-Saharan Africa served to create opportunities and promote business and investment relations between the two regional blocks. Happy coincidence: it took place on 18 and 19 September, just after the National Day of Angola at Expo, which gave the opportunity to several personalities attending from Angola to participate.
On the agenda was the internationalization of bilateral and multilateral relations. The afternoon of the first day and the morning of the second were reserved for B2B meetings (business-to-business).
Angola participated prominently at this encounter with two interventions on the first morning. Albina Assis Africano was in the introductory panel, as General Commissioner of the Angolan Pavilion and President of the “Steering Committee” of Expo Milan 2015. She praised the EXPO as “extraordinary platform for contact, interaction and partnership to form closer relations between peoples and nations.” She further emphasized the importance of the Charter of Milan as a legacy of the World Exhibition, and “as a backdrop to inspire new terms, more balanced and innovative in bilateral and multilateral relations between Europe and Africa, to strengthen the human aspects of development and self-sustainability of projects that are to be implemented.”Albina Assis Africano then recalled that the opportunities of business and investment should not deviate from this rule.
The Minister of Industry of Angola, Engineer Bernarda Henriques da Silva, partook in the second panel, dedicated to forms of cooperation in the industrial sector. She there highlighted the bilateral relationship between the two partners by tracing the development of several agreements, treaties and cooperations between the EU and Africa and concluded that: “the regulatory framework for cooperation between the European Union and Africa in general and Angola in particular is vast and suitable for the promotion of sustainable development of Angola.” She stressed that one of the focuses of the Angola Development National Plan (2013-2017) is the diversification of industry, with the imperativ that this sector be led by the private sector. Winding up, she explained: “the ministry of industry is now in a position to participate actively in a timely future, and in the discussions on cooperation between the European Union and Angola.”