Access2innovation wants to thank the more than 35 members and business partners, who joined our Partnership Day April 27, 2023. The desire for meeting other members and joining the discussions was great and all we could wish for.
After an energetic welcome to – and from – our new CEO, Karin Elisabeth Lind, the floor was open for four interesting views on the business opportunities for Danish companies in Africa.
The visions of the policymakers
Head of Department – Green Diplomacy and Climate, Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Elsebeth Søndergaard Krone talked about the visions of the policymakers and what Denmark is doing to promote Danish business opportunities on the African markets. The interest in Africa is rising, she said, especially in connection with the new foreign strategy of the ministry. Soon Elsebeth Søndergaard Krone will be the Danish ambassador to South Africa. We look forward to cooperating with her in the future.
“A myriad of opportunities”
Florence Charamba Christensen from Afrika Consultancy spoke about the opportunities for Danish companies in the African agriculture sector. Africa has the fastest growing agriculture sector growth of 4,1 % – compared to 2,7 % worldwide. This gives a myriad of opportunities for Danish companies on African soils. By 2050 the food industry in Eastern and Southern Africa is expected to grow with 800 %. A growth as explosive as the fertility of the Africa soil: “You drop a piece of peppermint chewing gum in the ground and a few weeks after, you have a flowering peppermint bush,” as Florence Charamba Christensen described it. She continued:
“To increase chances of success, companies must conduct pre-market entry feasibility studies, look at the regulatory frameworks, establish local support functions and partnerships, ensure adequate infrastructure is in place to support their operations, secure financing and last but not least build relations.”
Ideal framework conditions
Investment Director in IFU, Anders Frigaard described the ideal framework conditions for Danish companies wishing to enter African markets. As always, our guests had a lot of questions for him, and the dialogue was lively. All IFU-investments must support the green transition and contribute to poverty alleviation and reduced inequality. Furthermore, IFU has a strong focus on the companies’ corporate social responsibility to ensure, among other things, that employees are given proper working conditions and that a project company’s production is socially and environmentally sustainable.
“Partnership with A2i helps us in Africa”
Ole Haubro, Sales Director in Aller Aqua, generously shared tips from his long career south of Sahara on what it takes to succeed on the African markets. Generously he invited all members to contact him on practical matters in his area. Ole Haubro also underlined that local partnerships are crucial for succeeding in Africa. He said:
“Partnership with A2i helps us in Africa. There are many interesting programs, but they are complicated to apply for. We don’t know how to make applications, but Access2innovation does.”