Dr Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi speaks during the event.
Sajjad Ahmad, Deputy Business Editor
Sustainable Trade Africa (STA) takes pride in successfully concluding its pivotal event, contributing significantly to the discourse on sustainable development within the African trade landscape during COP28.
Under the theme “Transforming Africa Trade for Climate Resilience & Sustainable Development,” STA emerged as a dedicated platform, fostering crucial discussions on the intricate relationship between trade, economic prosperity, and environmental sustainability.
Keynote speaker Dr Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade, emphasised the importance of platforms like Sustainable Trade Africa in driving sustainability actions and fostering collaboration. He said “Africa is a continent that will be increasingly pivotal to the world’s efforts to transition to a more sustainable economy, possessing the natural resources, the talent and the trade connectivity to develop and distribute green products and services. Supporting Africa’s ability to develop renewable energy sources, extract in-demand minerals, and connect their producers to supply chains ought to be considered a developmental priority. Platforms such as Sustainable Trade Africa are an important driver of stakeholder collaboration in these efforts, enabling investment in strategically important sectors that can strengthen Africa’s economic resilience and independence – and support global economic transformation.”
Wamkele Mene, Secretary-General, AfCFTA Secretariat, added, “Our continent is advancing, not just in natural resources but in green trade and various sustainable practices. Together, we contribute to preserving our planet for future generations.”
"I congratulate Dr. Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade of the UAE, and the government of the UAE for hosting COP28 and placing the things that matter to Africa on its agenda," said Prof. Benedict O. Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of African Export-Import Bank.
"Sustainable Trade Africa stands as a pivotal initiative aiming to delicately balance the preservation of our world with the pursuit of trade and economic development, particularly in less affluent economies like those in Africa. Striking this balance is crucial to avoid the challenging choice between securing the planet for the future and ensuring basic livelihoods today. I commend our esteemed partners, Mr. Walid Hareb Alfalahi, Chief Executive Officer UAE Trade Center & DC Global, as well as Wamkele Mene of the AfCFTA Secretariat, for their collaboration in organizing this significant event," he added.
In his remarks, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of DP World, highlighted cost-efficient logistics solutions from Africa and the significance of sustainability in inter-African trade.
Walid Hareb Alfalahi, CEO of UAE Trade centre said “The immense potential across various sectors in Africa knows no bounds. Pioneering initiatives like Sustainable Trade Africa play a crucial role, fostering fresh perspectives with each endeavour. Reflecting on a 25-year journey as CEO of Dubai Consultancy and UAE Trade centre, the realisation of Africa’s untapped potential emerges as a beacon for visionary investors. As we move ahead, our commitment extends to ongoing innovation and substantial contributions to COP29 and UNGA 79.”
The event effectively brought together leaders, experts, and stakeholders, featuring the participation Prof. Benedict Okey Oramah, President & Chairman of the Board, Afreximbank; Nardos Bekele-Thomas, CEO, AUDA-NEPAD; and prominent speakers like Dr. James Mwangi, Group Managing Director and CEO, Equity Group Holdings; Solomon Quaynor, Vice President – Private Sector, Infrastructure & Industrialisation, Africa Development Bank; Shaka Kariuki, Co-CEO and Chief Investment Officer, Kuramo Capital Management; and Yusuf Daya, Director AU/AfCFTA Relations and Trade Policy at Afreximbank, among others.
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