Meetings & Debates

Developing Economic Exchange with the Arab World and Africa

Developing Economic Exchange with the Arab World and Africa
Rencontres économiques du 30 mars 2016 IMA
IMA / Thierry Rambaud

A Morning of Economic Forums, 30 March 2016

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Although Africa is experiencing a strong growth and an expanding middle class, it is still faced with many challenges relating to economic development, particularly in the sectors of energy, infrastructures, urban equipment, and the latest information technologies. This context is creating many investment opportunities for French and Arab countries.

As the Gulf States benefit from significant financing capacities, the countries of the Maghreb are profiting from their local presence to develop their banking networks and invest in the construction and telecom markets. The United Arab Emirates and Morocco are establishing themselves as hubs for Africa, particularly for French companies that wish to enter the African market.

The accounts of the various participants shed light on the current characteristics of the Arab and African markets and contributed to the discussion on the various partnerships that need to be established.

Round table

  • Didier Acouetey, President of the Africsearch Group (France & sub-Saharan Africa)
  • Tarik Choho, Deputy Managing Director of OCP and President and Managing Director of OCP AFRICA (Morocco)
  • Jean-Michel Guelaud, Managing Director of Sogea-Satom (VINCI Construction) (France)
  • Saïd Ibrahimi, CEO of Casablanca Finance City Authority (Morocco)
  • Sami Zaoui, Partner at EY Advisory (Tunisia & Algeria)

Debate chaired by Malick Diawara, Editorial Manager of Le Point Afrique

6 thematic workshops were organised in partnership with the Council of French Investors in Africa (CIAN) and AfricaFrance:

  • Banks, finance & private equity, chaired by Karim Zine-Eddine, Director of Studies and Relations with Africa, Paris Europlace, and Hervé Schricke, President of Club Afrique, the French Association of Investors for Growth (AFIC)
  • The legal framework and public/private partnerships, chaired by Bruno Poulain, Investment Arbitration Lawyer at the law firm EY, and Jean-Michel Debrat, Managing Director of AfricaFrance
  • Infrastructures and interconnections: logistics, transport, and urban centres, chaired by Etienne Giros, Delegate President of the CIAN, and Gérard Wolf, President of the ‘Ville Durable’ (‘Sustainable City’) task force, MEDEF International
  • The energy challenge, chaired by Olga Johnson, General Secretary of Energies Pour l’Afrique (‘Energy for Africa’), and Gilles Vermot-Desroches, Director of Sustainable Development at Schneider Electric
  • The opportunities related to information technologies: digital and telecoms, chaired by Denis Ruyant, Managing Director of SONEMA, and Bruno Mettling, Deputy Managing Director of the Orange Group and President and Managing Director of Orange (Middle East & Africa)
  • Morocco as a hub for Africa, chaired by Lamia Merzouki, Deputy Managing Director of Casablanca Finance City Authority, and Faiza Hachkar, Business Development Manager at the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry for Morocco in France.

The Arab World Institute would like to take this opportunity to thank the partners of the Economic Forum 

Le Point Afrique partenaire des rencontres économiques à l'IMA

EY rencontres économiques IMA  OCP Africa partenaire de l'Institut du monde arabe  Casablanca Finance City partenaire IMA

Cian partenaire de l'Institut du monde arabe  Africa France partenaire de l'IMA  Chambre française de commerce et d'industrie du Maroc IMA

Article published on04/02/2016

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