Institut Choiseul to ramp up Africa presence
The French think-tank Institut Choiseul has been active in Africa since 2014 and now plans to increase its presence in 2024. This March, it will launch a club specifically dedicated to the continent.
The UN special representative for West Africa and the Sahel, Mozambique's Leonardo Santos Simao, is booked to travel to Moscow in the first quarter of this year. He has a meeting with the Russian foreign ministry to discuss the situation in the Sahel.
The French President is due to chair a Defence Council meeting on 14 November devoted exclusively to Africa. The future of France's military presence on the continent will be at the heart of the talks, at a time when the coup d'état in Niger has prompted the Élysée to review its initial plans.
As the new chair of the Economic Community of West African States, the Nigerian president wants to inject fresh energy into the organisation's leadership as it struggles more than ever with military juntas and Islamist militant threats across the region. He has set up a task force to tackle the issue.
By jointly introducing a premium of $400 per tonne on cocoa beans in autumn 2020, Ivory Coast and Ghana were seeking to ensure that cocoa producers' revenues were maintained. In so doing, however, they sparked off an open war with the big commodity traders, who have since taken steps to get round the measure and avoid paying the premium.
During a trip to Paris and Brussels, UNOWAS's Leonardo Santos Simao, held talks with officials, calling for a reduction in the sanctions against Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger's juntas.
Christophe Bigot's hold on his position as the French foreign ministry's Africa head had been shaky for months before his sacking on 12 December. In the end, it came down to his handling of the Niger coup.
A gathering of France's top defence officials to discuss pressing issues about Africa that was original scheduled for 14 November will now take place on 12 December.
The difficult marketing campaign for the 2023-2024 harvest is undermining cooperation between the two West African giants in the sector.
A meeting of the Élysée Palace's defence council, devoted specifically to Africa and initially planned for 14 November, is set to be rescheduled to another date before 28 November.
The European Union is working on a new plan to support the Ghana Navy.
Having established a foothold in French-speaking and central Africa, the French company's African branch, which is a specialist internet service provider, is looking to break into new markets in English-speaking countries.
Several heads of state from ECOWAS are preparing to travel to New York at the end of the month to attend the next United Nations General Assembly.
Former Chadian agriculture minister Djimet Adoum, who has been at the helm of the Coalition for the Sahel since 2021, is preparing to hand over to former Mauritanian foreign minister Hamadi Ould Meimou.
EU high representative for foreign affairs Josep Borrell will travel to Ghana in October to discuss security cooperation.
The US billionaire George Soros's organisation will bring together a cross-section of key players involved in the restitution of looted artworks and artefacts at a summit in Accra. In its work on this issue, Open Society has built a network of political influence across the continent.
Atlantic Lithium rejects Ghana bid to up stake in Cape Coast lithium mining project, but Accra may have last word.
The 7th symposium of Gulf of Guinea navy commanders is scheduled to take place in Lomé on 18 and 19 October.
Nigeria's position on the free trade Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and West African states is 'unlikely to change', according to the EU ambassador to Abuja Samuela Isopi.
The future of the Accra Initiative, a West African security cooperation structure aimed at stemming the spread of rampant Islamist insurgency from the Sahel, remains uncertain. The United Kingdom and the EU, as key partners in the project, are encouraging member states to clarify their positions before unlocking any significant financial support.
The Elysée and the defence ministry have been holding discreet consultations with a handful of African "partners" to present the reorganisation of France's military presence on the continent.
The Guinea-Bissau president's hopes of a second term at the ECOWAS helm could well be dashed. The West African regional group, weakened by a series of coups in its member states and by a spat over whether national presidents should be allowed to serve a third term, is looking at several other potential candidates.
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