How to build a sustainable strategic partnership – EU-Africa Relations in the spotlight

Event Date:

March 11, 2021

Event Time:

11:00 am

Event Location:


Date: 11 March 2021

Time: 11:00 (Brussels time) / 10:00 (Accra time)

Online Event (via Zoom)

Close relations between the European Union and the states of Africa are of utmost importance for both sides and were hardly coincidentally one of the priorities of the German Council Presidency 2020. Even though an intended EU-AU-Summit needed to be postponed due to the COVID-19-pandemic, Angela Merkel and many of her EU counterparts stated that cooperation is crucial in a number of fields, reaching from migration to climate change to sustainable economic growth and prosperity. Moreover, the UN Food Systems Summit to be held later this year will provide the regions with a unique opportunity to enhance EU-Africa relations and promote a common agenda for sustainable and resilient food systems. In addition, on the 1st of January, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) came into effect and will create strategic opportunities for African and European actors to meet on equal terms. Many of these aspects are already or will shortly become subject to discussion on the EU level, may it be through summits or the programs of upcoming Council Presidencies.

In order to achieve a partnership on eye-to-eye-level and tackle the challenges that remain equally important on both sides of the Mediterranean, the perspective of the African states or the African Union as a whole must be included in dialogues. Only if both side’s preferences are met, a sustainable strategic partnership with shared purposes can be built in the long run. A number of critics say that European states didn’t even come close to such an approach in the past and should make additional efforts to reach solutions which are in the best interest of all partners involved. This could become all the more important against the background of the European Commission’s new EU-Africa Strategy, which was presented in 2020.

During this online event, we would like to discuss how an equal partnership driven by shared interests between the EU and Africa can be fostered and how the AfCFTA can catalyze to a relationship based on true reciprocity. In what way can the EU seize the opportunity of AfCFTA as one of the cornerstones of its future trade strategy with Africa? And how does this build on the recommendations of the EU-AU Task Force on Rural Africa? Which role should the EU play towards the African Union? Which roles can Germany and the Netherlands on the one hand, and Ghana on the other hand play bilaterally in order to facilitate these processes? These and further questions will be raised during the webinar.

The European Office of Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung and Socires kindly invite you to our online event “How to build a stronger strategic partnership – EU-Africa Relations in the spotlight”, which will take place on Thursday, 11 March 2021 (11:00 CET / 10:00 GMT) via Zoom. We look forward to discussing this highly relevant topic with Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana, as well as further high-level speakers. The discussion will take place in English. Please register via the following link:

We look forward to your participation!



Welcoming Remarks

Prof. Dr. Norbert Lammert

President Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.


Keynote Speech

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

President of the Republic of Ghana


Panel Reaction

Michael Gahler

Member of the European Parliament (MEP)

Member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET)

European People’s Party (EPP)

Kitty van der Heijden

Director-General for International Cooperation (DGIS)

Ministry of Foreign Affairs (NL)

Prof. Christine Wieck

Professor for Agricultural and Food Policy

University of Hohenheim

Member of Task Force “Rural Africa” (European Commission)


Shada Islam

Advisor and Analyst

New Horizons Project (NHP)


President responds to the panel


President and Panel take questions from the audience


Panelists formulate key takeaways for the event


End of event

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