On May 14-16, 2019, the African Caribbean Pacific (ACP) Group of States convened a knowledge sharing and networking event in Mauritius, where delegates exchanged information and experiences on private sector development in East Africa and Southern Africa.
The event’s objectives were to inform delegates from private sector and governments on the recent development of the European Investments Plans and other funding programmes by the EU and African institutions. Funding options, for example for SMME development, their inclusion in value chains, funding for farmers’ associations and options for investment were shared with participants. Panellists from across the African continent shared best practice examples to improve the investment climate and collaboration between the private sector and governments in countries such as Ethiopia, Mauritius and Kenya. Furthermore, trends regarding the Fourth Industrial Revolution and digitalisation / automation were discussed.
On the side-lines of the Mauritius Dialogue, the Southern Africa Trust and the NEPAD Business Foundation also took this opportunity to co-facilitate a meeting of the recently launched SADC Business Council. The SADC Business Council is aiming to be the central regional private sector platform that will facilitate policy engagement between the private sector, including small businesses, and SADC Member States in order to foster industrialisation, economic development and wealth creation in the region.