Building Africa’s capacity for international economic negotiations

Addis Ababa, 18 April 2018 (ECA) - The 4th edition of the annual workshop on International Economic Negotiations will take place in Libreville, Gabon, from 23 to 27  April - under the theme, “Building Africa’s Negotiating Capacity for Improved Terms of Engagement with the Rest of the World.”

Organized by the Economic Commission for Africa’s (ECA) Capacity Development Division (CDD), the workshop aims to contribute towards filling perceived gaps in the skills and capacity of African governments and institutions to negotiate international agreements that best serve national and continental interests.

“It is a platform for lead national negotiators from all African countries to exchange experiences, explore options and strategies for possible coordination of positions, and listen to and interact with globally leading thinkers and practitioners in the field of economic negotiations,” said Martin Ndende, a CDD Senior Regional Adviser.

Mr. Ndende stated that the need for this workshop derives largely from the fact that Africa’s economic engagement with the rest of the world effectively determines its future prosperity. 

It is against this backdrop, he added, “ that we are focusing on four major issue areas: Investment; Taxation and Financial Instruments; Trade; Natural resources contracts; and Gender Issues as a Cross-Cutting Challenge in International Economic Negotiations."

African ministers have consistently called upon continental institutions to provide capacity building assistance in the field of negotiations. This workshop responds, therefore, to these calls by focusing on how member states can best protect their national interests from being undermined through international agreements/contracts.

This workshop also anchors on ECA’s role in promoting policies and programmes that strengthen the process of African economic integration by assisting member states in the development of common positions towards international negotiations, as well as in enhancing the skills of African negotiators to get optimal deals for their countries and region from bilateral and international negotiations.

Participants include lead national negotiators from all ECA member states, representatives of the African Union Commission, Regional Economic Commissions, academic institutions, and other experts in economic negotiations.

Issued by:

Communications Section
Economic Commission for Africa
PO Box 3001
Addis Ababa
Tel: +251 11 551 5826