Private Sector Investment Conference for the Great Lakes Region (24 - 25 February 2016)

Priorities: Infrastructure, Energy, Mining, Agriculture, Tourism, ICT and Finance

Front row: Left to right: Dr. Elham M.A. Ibrahim, Commissioner for Infrastructure & Energy, African Union; Mr. Said Djinnit, Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General to the Great Lakes Region; Mr. Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General; H.E. Mr. Joseph Kabila Kabange, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and H.E. Mr. Manuel Domingos Vicente, Vice-President of the Republic of Angola. Photo © UN/Office of the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General Great Lakes Region External link

The inaugural Private Sector Investment Conference (PSIC) for the Great Lakes Region took place on 24 - 25 February 2016, in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Over 1,000 people attended the Opening Session of the Meeting at the African Union Village in Kinshasa.

Logo of the conference

The Conference attracted over 500 delegates from:

  • Private sector organizations in the region,
  • Project sponsors,
  • Leaders from the regional governments and key development partners,
  • Private sector think-tanks,
  • International investors,
  • Various finance institutions and
  • Civil society from within and outside of the African Great Lakes Region.

In attendance were also high level representatives from the International Conference of the Great Lakes (ICGLR) External link and the African Union.

Mr. Maged Adelaziz, Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Africa was represented at the Conference by Ms. Beatrice K. Pacunega Manano, Chief of the Policy Analysis and Monitoring Branch (PAMB) of the Office.

Objectives of the Conference

The aims of the Conference were:

  • to strengthen economic cooperation,
  • to expand trade opportunities, and
  • to stimulate job creation towards long-term stability and peace in the region.

It was organized to coincide with the third anniversary of the signing of the 2012 Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the Great Lakes Region.

Contributions from High-level Participants

His Excellency President Joseph Kabila Kabange of the Democratic Republic of the CongoPresident Joseph Kabila Kabange of the DRC officially opened the two-day Conference on Wednesday 24 February, in the presence of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and several high level officials who led the delegations of their respective countries, organizations and businesses to the Conference. President Kabila and other leaders from the region underlined the increasing stability of the region and its immense and largely human and natural untapped potentials. They also highlight various policy reforms and enabling structures that are in place in the region, and urging investments to further engage.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moonIn his statement during the opening session, the Secretary-General lauded the initiative of regional leaders in calling for the Conference, which constitute recognition that peace and development are two sides of the same coin. He highlighted the “particularly opportune moment,” of the Conference in the wake of the adoption of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the Sustainable Development Goals, in which world leaders had pledged to end poverty by 2030 and leave no one behind.

In its contribution to discussions, OSAA, among other things, highlighted the important role the private sector can play in African and international efforts toward addressing illicit financial flows from the Continent, including in the context of implementation of the 2015 Addis Ababa Action Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In this regard, the Office urged the private sector to practice responsible business in the region. The Office also highlighted the importance of enhanced advocacy on the immense business opportunities and increasing stability of the region, and to share the positive experiences of tourists and businesses in the region toward mitigating any persisting negative perceptions about the region.

More about the Conference

The Conference provided a platform for networking among participants with a view to shaping new business ventures, in particular in relation to the 25 illustrative projects highlighted in the Investment Opportunity Brief (IOB) prepared for the conference, and others showcased in the exhibition stands of the Conference.

It would be recalled that this Conference was held following a decision of the leaders of the region during the second meeting of the Regional Mechanism for Monitoring the Framework Agreement for Peace, Security and Cooperation for the DRC and the Region held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on January 31, 2014.

>> More information about the Conference on the Private Sector Investment Conference Website External link

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