With the delayed sixth African Union-European Union Summit scheduled for mid-February 2022, longstanding promises to forge an equal partnership between Africa and Europe are facing intensified scrutiny. More than four years on from the last official summit, urgent questions surrounding pandemic recovery and the global distribution of vaccines have added a new dimension to significant pre-existing tests across priority issues of trade, security, migration and mobility, climate change and digital transformation.
New initiatives and evolving agreements during the delay period will have an additional bearing on discussions: from the EU’s new Global Gateway initiative, promising to mobilize up to 300 billion euros in investments worldwide from 2021-2027, to the successor to the Cotonou Agreement between the EU and African, Caribbean and Pacific states that was initialled in April 2021. For the emergence of any new continent-to-continent framework to offer genuine added value to this complex landscape, honest dialogue on the existing tensions and limitations of the AU-EU relationship, as well as its long-term potential, must be an essential precursor to formal negotiations.
At this event, which also launches the Routledge Handbook of EU-Africa Relations, speakers discuss the status of the partnership between Africa and the EU, examining the potential obstacles to stronger collaboration and the key opportunities for progress that lie ahead.
HE Professor Robert Dussey, Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and Togolese Abroad, Togolese Republic; Chief Negotiator, Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS)
Hafsa M Maalim, Partnership Officer & Focal Person on the Peace Fund, Office of the Commissioner, Department of Political Affairs, Peace & Security (PAPS), African Union Commission
Bernard Quintin, Deputy Managing Director for Africa, European External Action Service (EEAS)
Dr Toni Haastrup, Senior Lecturer in International Politics, University of Stirling; co-editor, The Routledge Handbook of EU-Africa Relations
Chair: Dr Alex Vines OBE, Managing Director for Risk, Ethics and Resilience; Director, Africa Programme, Chatham House