African Leaders

African Leaders Call For a “Privileged Partnership” With Europe

Tunisian Prime Minister, Najla Bouden, alongside the Benin President uses their countries as a yardstick for French CEOs present at the confederation of French employers’ annual meeting in Paris, to invest in Africa.

Tunisian Prime Minister Calls for More Investment

Najla Bouden, the Tunisian Prime Minister during her speech at the meeting, calls for more investment. She says “Europe would benefit from betting on Africa now through ESG (environmental, social and governance criteria, Eds.) which are attracting more and more international liquidity, especially since the pandemic, with 26 billion dollars dedicated to renewable energy alone in 2021. 

But also, Europe would benefit from focusing on project financing in a PPP (public-private partnership, Eds.) format that facilitates economic diversification and supports the continent’s priorities. “

Beninese President Praises His Country

In response to this, the Beninese President, Patrice Talon, a former company director, ceased the moment to praise Benin’s development model and assets for foreign investors. In his statement, he stated that “we have set up a special economic zone in which, unfortunately, there are still not many French people, but there are many Asians, unfortunately, because I am in France and I say that, unfortunately (laughter). We expect that, once again, Asia will not overtake France in this area”. 

Furthermore, he says he has a special and emotional attachment for France. And in return, he expects French entrepreneurs to come and see for themselves what is going on and take the risk of coming to do something, however small it may be to begin with.”

Presently, France is said to be the third trading partner of Benin, after India and China. The merit and qualities of the two African countries have been mentioned by their leaders. However, Patrice Talon emphasized the ban on strikes in the Beninese public sector and its limitation to two days per month in the private sector.