The Russian-African Forum in Yekaterinburg acts as catalyst for dialogue between Russian and African businesses
The fourth Russian-African Forum (RAF) was held in Yekaterinburg on 11-14 July 2016 as part of the Innoprom-2016 international industrial trade fair. The event was opened by Denis Manturov, the Head of the Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Russian Federation.
The latest Russian-African Forum was an integral part of the Innoprom-2016 event. As Denis Manturov noted when he opened the plenary session of RAF 2016 entitled ‘Russia and Africa: it takes two to tango’, Africa is becoming increasingly important to Russia in foreign-policy terms. The Head of the Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Russian Federation added that there has been an expansion and intensification of relations between Russia and African governments, which can be explained by increased political will on behalf of the politicians, as well as an increase in the interest displayed by the business community.
Delegates from State and private organizations from Ethiopia, Uganda, Burkina Faso, Zimbabwe, Burundi, Rwanda, Kenya, the Republic of Ghana and the Republic of South Africa took part in the RAF programme.
There is already a wide range of large-scale projects under implementation in Africa with the help of Russian capital. These include the complex development of the Darwendale platinum deposit in Zimbabwe, the development of the largest bauxite deposit in the world in Guinea and an aluminium plant in Nigeria.
Representatives of African governments proposed that Russian business actively invest into the energy sector, electronics and mining. In order to stimulate cooperation and attract new partners, the sides are willing to offer a range of favourable conditions. Russian goods can also be purchased with the help of the B2B-EXPORT.COM online platform, which was presented to visitors during RAF.
B2B-EXPORT.COM allows buyers to make purchases direct from reliable suppliers that have been pre-approved through an audit conducted by the Platform. Buyers can follow the progress of the transaction from the placing of an order through to the production of the goods and their delivery.
RAF at Innoprom 2016 was also the venue for the signing of a number of agreements on cooperation between the B2B-EXPORT Group of Companies and a range of major Russian and African energy companies. One of the agreements concluded involves the opening of a joint office in Nairobi, Kenya, which will support the entry of Russian companies to the markets of sub-Saharan Africa.
Targin AO of Russia and Geothermal Development Company of Kenya signed (Кения) signed a memorandum of agreement, which was executed by Kamil Zakirov, General Director of Targin and Michael Ogwapit, member of the board of directors of GDC. According to the agreement, the parties agree to work on strategic inter-relations, and the implementation of mining projects based on deposits located in Kenya.
“We have high hopes for our cooperation with GDC. This memorandum allows us to identify the scope and range of our cooperation for the development of our strategic inter-relations with our Kenyan partners”, concluded Kamil Zakirov.
Representing GDC, Michael Ogwapit confirmed that the signing of the memorandum of cooperation marked the beginning of a series of agreements between the Kenyan energy heavyweight and Russian companies.
Also as part of the RAF, the B2B-EXPORT Group of Companies and OOO EnergopromAvtomatizatsiya concluded an agreement for the opening of a representative office in East Africa. “We would like to thank B2B-EXPORT for their tremendous work and for the opportunity to take the first step in the actively expanding markets of East Africa. It is our pleasure to offer our high-tech energy management to our future partners”, announced Alexander Segal, General Director of OOO EnergopromAvtomatizatsiya.
An agreement on cooperation was also concluded by Rotek ZAO and B2B-EXPORT, which was signed by Valery Khromov, Deputy General Director of Rotek PLC and Ekaterina Dyachenko, the founder of B2B-EXPORT Group of Companies. As Valery Khromov noted, during bilateral discussions the representatives of companies from East Africa described in detail their opportunities and goals on the Russian market. “As a result of the event it became clear that Rotek companies can provide goods and services that are in demand on the African markets. Primarily, this is engineering products, that is to say products connected to the so-called fourth industrial revolution- the internet of things, services for the control and monitoring of this kind of equipment. We are planning to actively drive sales of our goods on the African market”, noted Khromov.