The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) are hosting the Africa Day on 22 November in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Senior members of the Ethiopian government will join experts and policymakers from across Africa and Europe to lead discussions on opportunities for growth and diversification. They will explore ways to break down barriers and support the inclusive industrialisation of Africa.

At the core of the Africa Day agenda is how industry in Africa can further attract investment and more diverse markets in Europe and Africa itself. Key to the discussions will be how to offer more job creating opportunities for young people and women – particularly in the field of entrepreneurship.

The event will gather chief executives, financial officers, government representatives, entrepreneurs, academics, nongovernmental groups and civil society leaders from Africa and Europe and offer them a platform to build new partnerships, reinforce old ones and find new ways to help the continent.

Ahead of the EIB Africa Day, EIB President Werner Hoyer – who will be signing new agreements and loans in Addis to support job creating initiatives - said: “Africa is transforming itself. It is a continent with some of the world’s fastest growing economies, with the youngest population of any continent, hugely dynamic and full of potential. Africa also has the unique opportunity of leapfrogging many developed economies in the use of modern technology, like mobile payment or the use of off-grid renewable energy solutions. Alongside our African and international partners such as UNIDO, at the EIB – as the Bank of the EU- we want to foster financial inclusion and support growth of the private sector, from the micro and small businesses to the larger ones. African companies are often underserved by financial markets. We want to improve their access to finance, promote the use of sustainable energy sources and improve the infrastructure that companies need to thrive, thereby helping to create jobs and business opportunities, namely for women and young entrepreneurs. This will reduce poverty and generate lasting benefits for the population.”

UNIDO Director General LI Yong said: “Africa’s manufacturing has been expanding in absolute terms and growing faster than the world average. Accelerating the achievement of inclusive and sustainable industrial development requires a move from business as usual to innovative and audacious business models and approaches. Enhancing partnerships remains essential to further advance industrialization in Africa and make the most of the many opportunities on the continent. UNIDO is deepening cooperation with partners such as EIB to enhance the synergies of resources and knowledge in key areas. A vibrant global partnership will not only ensure the successful operationalization of IDDA III but will also enable the region to draw on the benefits from the timely implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area.”

The EIB and UNIDO have enhanced cooperation to share good practices and expertise in relevant sectors, most notably resilient infrastructure, sustainable industrialisation and innovation. Both institutions are working together to help achieve several of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to end poverty, support decent work and economic growth, as well as climate action.

Press at the Africa Day

Members of the press are welcome during the whole conference and will be given the opportunity to interview senior representatives and experts from the EIB and UNIDO as well as the plenary speakers.  Please indicate your interest via the contacts below.


The EIB will be announcing new partnerships to support women entrepreneurship, trade and climate, and will also present its new report ‘Banking in Africa: Delivering on Financial Inclusion, Supporting Financial Stability’. Press are welcome to attend the formal signatures.

The following EIB senior representatives will be available for interviews:

  • EIB President Mr. Werner Hoyer
  • EIB Vice-President Mr. Ambroise Fayolle
  • EIB Head of Office in Ethiopia Mr. Christophe Litt
  • EIB Lead Social Development & Gender Specialist Ms. Eleni Kyrou
  • EIB Head of Global Partners, Maria Shaw–Barragan


It is high time to move the IDDA III agenda steadily forward in order to foster inclusive and sustainable industrial development in Africa. As the leading organization to implement IDDA III, UNIDO proposed to implement its new innovative approach to bring about the necessary structural transformation.

The approach is based on a country-owned model known as the Programme for Country Partnership (PCP) that leverages financial and non-financial resources, promotes regional integration and mobilizes co-operation among Africa’s development partners. PCP continues to serve as the Organization’s high-impact solution for inclusive and sustainable industrial development. The PCP piloting phase, which comprised Ethiopia, Peru and Senegal, has been expanded to include Cambodia, Kyrgyzstan and Morocco. Now, every geographical region of the world is covered by the PCP approach.

The UNIDO Director General Li Yong will be available for an interview. Please submit your interview inquiry to UNIDO’s Advocacy and Media Relations Division.