In its Programme, published in June 2020 and with the AU-EU Summit on the horizon – initially scheduled for October 2020 -, the current EU Council Presidency Trio (Germany, Portugal, and Slovenia) committed to working “for the development of relations and cooperation with Africa”. The Summit has been widely expected to initiate a paradigm shift in relations between both continents and highlight the importance of Africa in the EU foreign policy – for which the first foreign trip (to Addis Ababa, headquarters of the African Union) of the current European Commission has also contributed. In the meantime, however, the Summit of Heads of State and Government was postponed due to the pandemic and the process of building a new Joint Strategy had to adapt to the new circumstances.
The process that was expected to be concluded by the end of 2020, with the adoption of a new Joint Africa-EU Strategy, has gained life beyond the current Trio of Presidencies – with the AU-EU Summit now expected to take place in early 2022 during the French Presidency of the Council of the EU. For this reason, in a moment of transition between the Portuguese Presidency and the Slovenian Presidency, it is important to take stock of the progress made so far. This is one of the main objectives of the Webinar “The role of EU Council Presidencies in advancing relations with Africa”, which will seek to discuss the importance of the next Presidencies in completing the ongoing process.
Agenda (* tbc)
Opening – The contribution of the Portuguese Presidency to the development of EU-Africa relations
>Ana Patrícia Fonseca, President of Plataforma Portuguesa das ONGD
>Cristina Moniz, Vice-President of Camões Institute
Roundtable – The role of the next EU Council Presidencies in advancing relations with Africa
>Tine Rus, Slovenia’s Permanent Representation to the EU
>Representative from the French Presidency*
>Eyachew Tefera, Director of Institute for African Studies, on SLOGA’s behalf
>Pierre Jacquemot, Coordination Sud
>Moderation by Fernando Jorge Cardoso, Instituto Marquês de Valle Flôr and Clube Lisboa
>Tanya Cox, Director of CONCORD Europe