Borderless 2013: Connecting Markets

The Borderless Alliance, an initiative launched in 2011 to increase trade throughout West Africa, has recently announced its annual conference, Borderless 2013: Connecting Markets, to take place on the 14th and 15th February 2013 in Ougadougou, Burkina Faso.

Private sector stakeholders from across West Africa will participate in the event, including the region’s leading trading companies, transport and logistics companies, banks and other financial institutions. ECOWAS and UEMOA, the regional bodies that obtain consensus on trade policy from West African states, will also participate along with representatives of ministries from West African states.

“West Africa is experiencing unprecedented economic growth and development,” said Borderless the Alliance President Ziad Hamoui. “Removing trade barriers is critical to harnessing that growth and development and ensuring that all of West Africa’s 300 million citizens benefit from it.”

“The Borderless Alliance serves as a platform to identify and address the problems that affect regional trade,” said Justin Bayili, managing director of the Borderless Alliance. “We are coordinating the implementation of a comprehensive strategy with private sector stakeholders across West Africa. The conference will allow stakeholders to collaborate on the strategy and build the momentum to driving further change.”

Online registration for Borderless 2013 is now open at

Business After Conflict conference

IFC, IFC’s Conflict Affected States in Africa Initiative (CASA), and “This Is Africa”, a Financial Times publication, are hosting Business After Conflict in Nairobi on November 28, 2012.

This one-day conference will bring together high-level representatives from government and business to discuss investment opportunities in countries recovering from conflict, with a focus on Sierra Leone, Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea and South Sudan.

Bringing together investors, risk analysts and senior politicians, the event will address risk perception and reality, and how it affects financing and insurance. The programme will also offer insight into investment dynamics, reform ‘credibility’, the donor tools available to support investment and conflict-sensitive business practices. Participants will hear success stories from businesses that have flourished in post conflict states.

To help publicize the event, IFC has launched a photo competition open to African nationals that is seeking images of the private sector benefiting communities in post conflict countries.

WACEE 2012

Domestic and international leaders within energy generation, energy efficiency, as well as water and waste management, will come together for the West African Clean Energy & Environment Conference & Exhibition WACEE 12 from 6th to 8th November 2012 in the International Conference Centre Accra, Ghana.

WACEE 12 will comprise a three day conference with an exhibition on each day and will provide a platform for power providers, technology suppliers, investors, industry experts as well as political and economical decision takers to discuss matters and opportunities in the area of clean energy. The conference will feature experts from the governmental, industrial and scientific sectors to provide input through participation in speech delivery, workshops or panels.

It  will therefore amount to a platform to bring together the knowledge and experience from the following sectors:
Conventional energies in West Africa: oil, gas and hydropower
Renewable energies in West Africa: wind, gas and biomass
Recycling and water treatment

The exhibition, as an international event for West Africa, will represent all key players within the industry, presenting their company and newest technology focused on clean energy and environment.

The exhibition will feature domestic and international exhibitors from the following sectors:
Oil and gas
Renewable energies (solar, wind, biomass)
Energy efficiency
Water and wastewater management
Waste management

SIAO 2012

The Salon International de l’Artisanat de Ouagadougou (SIAO) is an international fair for art and craft that will be held at Burkina Faso from October the 26th to November the 4th 2012.

Every 2 years, SIAO promotes African business of handicraft providing a framework to facilitate the access for professionals of fashion, decoration, design, fine arts, and furniture in international markets.

As a trusted partner for SIAO 2012, the USAID West Africa Trade Hub will present workshops under AfricaNow!, the international brand supported by the USAID Trade Hub and the AfricaNow! network of producers, exporters and buyers.

“Exporters often need help working with international buyers – as do the buyers,” said Elaine Bellezza, the USAID Trade Hub home décor and fashion accessories advisor. “Agents provide that help – facilitating the relationship between buyer and producer. This workshop specifically focuses on the important role they play.”

Handcrafts exporters from across West Africa will discuss how to facilitate deals with international buyers during the two-day workshop facilitated by AfricaNow!, an international network of handcrafts producers and buyers managed by the USAID West Africa Trade Hub.

Consolidating export agents are key actors in the handcrafts sector, facilitating exports to international markets. The workshop is looking specifically at the critical role agents play and helping them gain knowledge and skills to develop, and to build their networks with partners and increase exports to international buyers.

Facilitators include a U.S.-based buyer’s agent and regional sector leaders.

Over two days, artisanal sector experts will cover:
How to grow their consolidation businesses.
Regional collaboration opportunities.
Buyer expectations.
Best practices in consolidating and export.

Logistics West Africa Conference

Now in its second year, Logistics West Africa is a gathering of senior logistics and supply chain professionals creating the most innovative and profitable industry solutions. Sessions range from strategy to practical topics to expert advice on efficiency, innovation and collaboration. The Logistics West Africa exhibition (LWA) is the largest logistics event of its kind in West Africa and brings exhibiting companies offering logistical solutions together with major private companies cross industry and across West Africa. There is no other platform where companies looking to expand their business in the region have the opportunity to showcase their products, services and solutions to 100’s of senior delegates and 1000’s of industry professionals under one roof in just two days. After a successful event last year Logistics West Africa 2012 is set to be an even bigger success. With many exhibition stands and sponsorship packages already secured the event is set to grow in size and stature.

Careers in Africa London Summit

Careers in Africa is an international recruitment consultancy that specialises in recruiting high-calibre, internationally-based African candidates back into jobs within their home countries.

At the upcoming Careers in Africa London Summit to be held on 19-21 October 2012 participants can expect:
Unique access to key decision makers at this exclusive invitation-only event.
Pre-scheduled interviews with leading companies and multinationals.
Exclusive access to senior delegates to arrange ‘on-the-spot’ interviews.
Company presentations, round table discussions and workshops.
Skills Training Sessions.
A unique opportunity to network with other graduates and professionals from around the world.

Careers in Africa Recruitment Summits are held across Europe, Canada, the US and Africa, and enable a consortium of leading companies to interview pre-selected candidates, ranging from graduates and early-career professionals to mid-career talent.

Africa Fashion Week London-August 2012 (by AFWL)

The second instalment of Africa Fashion Week London (AFWL) returns on 3rd and 4th August 2012. Following the unprecedented success of last year’s event, AFWL has relocated to London Spitalfields, recent winners of a Best New Open Space award. This year’s event is set to be bigger and better with a larger venue, more designers and tons more exhibitors. This will be the first large scale event  to showcase UK and non-UK based seasoned and emerging fashion designers inspired by Africa.

The showcase debuted last year with an impressive turnout of over 4,700 attendees, the two day extravaganza created an unparalleled platform for over 50 international designers to showcase their collections. With the Olympics this year, all corners of the world will be focusing on what London has to offer, on and off the race tracks. The time is now to highlight Africa as a frontrunner in the international fashion community.

Spitalfields Market is surrounded by independent shops, cafes, bars and awarding winning restaurants such as Canteen, Galvin La Chapell and Giraffe to name a few. With a capacity of over 10,000 visitors, Spitalfields is the perfect location for a two day display of fashion, art, music and food.

Where Fashion Began (by AFWNY)

Africa Fashion Week New York (AFWNY) is a luxury multi-day event that will include runway shows, vendor exhibition, and industry networking events with the sole purpose of raising awareness of African fashion and entertainment professionals all over the world. More specifically, buyers and industry influentials will be previewed to African designers while over 2,000+ audience members will also witness the excitement and be a part of the cause.

Adirée, producer of AFWNY, showcases luxury and mass African-owned fashion brands through runway shows, exhibitions and videos. AFWNY includes runway shows hosting 21+ designers from various countries in Africa and those of the African diaspora, exhibitions, and industry networking events. Representing various countries in Africa, many designers from Africa creatively highlight personal culture within their designs-with or without the use of African prints.

AFWNY 2012 (July 12-18), is located in NYC’s financial district at 41 Broad Street, New York, NY 10004.

The African Futures Project (by Echo Ledge Productions)

“African Futures 2050” is a study where the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) and the Pardee Center for International Futures (IFs) provide an extensive analysis of the projected course of African development to 2050. Combining the deep and wide knowledge of Africa within the ISS with extensive use of the IFs modelling system, this discussion goes beyond past work in a number of ways. It looks across most major issue arenas: demographics, economics, sociopolitical change, the environment and human development itself, including health and education. It explores further into our future than perhaps any other extensive study of African futures has ever done. While not pushing forward specific policy initiatives, it provides a context within which those who pursue sustainable human development can consider policies.

World Business and Development Awards 2012

Nominations can now be made for the World Business and Development Awards 2012 by organizations and successful business initiatives that are engaged in innovative business models that are delivering both commercial success and helping improve social, economic and environmental conditions, and that are in line with the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development.

The Awards demonstrate how companies can, through their core business activities, help achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

When businesses apply the full force of their core business activities to development challenges and measure their success both by profit and social outcomes, there is no limit to what can be achieved,” said Clare Melford, CEO of the International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF), “We hope that the WBDA will again stimulate businesses of all sizes and in all regions to bring forward their best examples and so accelerate progress towards achieving the MDGs.”

In 2010, one of the winning initiatives was from Sierra Leone. The project by Heineken’s local subsidiary, Sierra Leone Breweries Ltd, and supported by the Common Fund for Commodities, assists farmers in the country by creating a sustainable local supply chain that increases the farmer’s incomes and thus helps alleviate poverty.

The World Business and Development Awards are being organized by the International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership this year with the Netherlands Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency and the UN Global Compact.

The award ceremony will be held on 19th June in Brazil at the Rio+20 Conference, closing the Business Action for Sustainable Development Business Day.

Applications must be made online by downloading the form at by 25th March 2012.