UK West and Central Africa Trade Investment Francophone 2022 London

The inaugural UK-Francophone West and Central Africa Trade and Investment Forum is a major intergovernmental and private sector summit convened by DMA, DIT and UKEF. 

Plenary sessions, vertical and geographic roundtables, deal rooms and a series of bilateral meetings between government and industry will take place over two packed days in central London.

The many French-speaking West and Central African countries have been historically underrepresented by British industry and underserved by diplomatic cover. This, however, has been a trend in reverse for several years, culminating in June’s ascension to the Commonwealth of Gabon and Togo. 

In total, eight countries including the West Africa power houses of Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire are joined by Central Africa’s Cameroon and the extraordinarily diverse economies of Benin, Niger and mineral-rich Guinea.

UK Export Finance has a significant appetite for French-speaking West and Central Africa – an appetite which has seen consistent year on year increases, and recent successes in these non-traditional markets include a wide-ranging, award-winning and record financing facility for primary healthcare in Cote d’Ivoire and an innovative infrastructure financing facility in Cameroon. 

In addition to governmental presence, 300-500 well-capitalised, multi-disciplinary British companies with an interest in West and Central Africa and expertise in banking, finance, infrastructure development, healthcare, education, clean energy, clean agri-tech, legal services, pharmaceuticals, de-carbonisation, ICT, creative sectors and FMCG are going to be present to promote their own skills, expertise and promote their historical investment, and present activity on the continent.

The eight countries represented invite one to one meetings with their visiting governments and UK Export Finance will offer both business and governments bespoke financing and insurance assistance for these fascinating emerging markets.

The event is free-to-attend but by invitation only and central London venue details will be provided closer to the Forum date.



08:00 – 09:00: Registration & Refreshments

09:00 – 09:15: Welcome Address & Opening Comments

  • Office of the Secretary of State, Department for International Trade (DIT)
  • Samir Abhyankar, Managing Director and Head of Private Equity, British International Investment (BII)

09:15 – 09:30: Keynote Addresses

  • Tim Reid, Head of Business Group, UK Export Finance (UKEF)

09:30 – 10.30: The Unique Francophone Offer, Regional Economic Outlook and Investment Opportunities

Chair:  Laurence Robertson MP, Chairman, Westminster Africa Business Group (WABG)

  • Office of the Minister for Africa, Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO)
  • Dr Mabouba Diagne, Vice President, ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID)
  • West African Development Bank (BOAD)
  • Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG) 
  • Steve Gray OBE, Regional Head, West Africa, UK Export Finance

Q&A Session

10:30 – 11:00: Refreshments Break

11:00 – 11:50: Insight into Benin and Cameroon and the UK Public and Private Offer



  • Chair: HM Ambassador Benin, Harriet Thompson
  • Chair: Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Cameroon, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP
  • Hon. Romuald Wadagni, Minister of Finance
  • Hon. Alamine Ousmane Mey, Minister of Economy, Planning and Regional Development
  • Riham Mansour, Business Manager Infrastructure and Construction, UKEF
  • Simon Buckenburg, Business Manager Infrastructure and Construction, UKEF
  • Mireille D’Oliveira Richards, Managing Director, Benin Connect
  • Brice Beumo, CEO, Beko Capital Advisory 
  • Dr Diane Acha-Morfaw, Board Chairperson, Cameroon Investment Promotion Agency (IPA)
  • Q&A Session
  • Q&A Session

11:55 – 12:45:  Insight into Côte d’Ivoire and Gabon and the UK Public and Private Offer

Côte d’Ivoire


  • Chair: HM Ambassador to Côté d’Ivoire, Catherine Brooker
  • Chair: HM Ambassador to Gabon, Christian Dennys
  • Hon. Souleymane Diarrassouba, Minister of Commerce, Industry and SME Promotion
  • Government Representative
  • Akim Daouda, CEO, Gabonese Sovereign Wealth Fund

  • Michele Dee, Regional Head Africa and India, UKEF
  • Yasmine Siddiqi, Business Development Officer, UKEF
  • Kady Doumbia Coulibaly, President, Côté d’Ivoire Chamber of Commerce (CICCGB)
  • Olam Group of Companies (tbc)
  • Sarmad Lone, Regional Head, Client Coverage, AME, CCIB, Standard Chartered Bank
  • Q&A Session
  • Q&A Session

12:45 – 13:40: Networking Lunch/Food Security and Job Creation Networking Lunch

13:40 – 14:30: Insight into Guinea and Niger and the UK Public and Private Offer



  • Chair: HM Ambassador to Guinea, Guy Harrison
  • Chair: HM Ambassador to Niger, Catherine Inglehearn
  • Hon. Moussa Cisse, Minister of Economy, Finance and Planning
  • Hon. Dr Ahmat Jidoud, Minister of Finance
  • Hon. Alkache Alhada, Minister of Commerce
  • Ismael Nabe, Advisor to the Prime Minister in charge of Investments and Partnerships
  • Paul Ling, Senior Underwriter, UKEF
  • Boris Medimorec, Senior Underwriter, UKEF
  • Mr Moussa Sidi Mohamed, President, Niger Chamber of Commerce
  • Rio Tinto (tbc)
  • Q&A Session
  • Q&A Session

14:35 – 15:25: Insight into Senegal and Togo and the UK Public and Private Offer



  • Chair: HM Ambassador to Senegal, Juliette John
  • Chair: HM High Commissioner to Togo, Harriet Thompson
  • Government Representative
  • Hon. Kodzo Adedje, Minister of Trade, Industry and Local Consumption
  • Hon. Rose Mivedor, Minister of Investment Promotion
  • Adam Harris, Head of Civil, Infrastructure and Energy, UKEF
  • Carla Senatore, Senior Origination Officer Africa/Asia, UKEF
  • Paul Woodman, Managing Director, ASGC
  • Private Sector Speaker
  • Sarangi, Sujithav, Executive Director, Project & Export Finance, Standard Chartered Bank
  • Q&A Session
  • Q&A Session

15:25 – 15.45: Tea and Coffee Break

15:45 – 15:55: DIT’s Commitment to Francophone Africa

  • John Humphrey, Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner to Africa, Department for International Trade

16:00 – 16:40: UK Expertise – Spotlights i.

Spotlight on Infrastructure 

Spotlight on Agriculture

  • Chair: Dr Nick Westcott, Director, Royal African Society

  • Elizabeth McCrory, Senior Export Finance Manager, UKEF

  • Sylvie Fekeram Wanogho, Finance Director, ERG International 

  • Nabil Saimi, Head of Business Development, InfraCo Africa

  • Chair: Lord Henry Bellingham, Former Minister for Africa 

  • Richard Hill, Export Finance Manager, UKEF

  • David Burton, Sector Director Agriculture – Africa, DIT

  • Hon. Antoine Lekpa Gbegbeni, Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Rural Development, Togo

  • Private Sector Speaker 

16:45 – 17:25: UK Expertise – Spotlights ii.

Spotlight on Energy

Spotlight on Blue Economy/Water

  • Chair: Michael Tchenga Wanchi, Country Director Cameroon, DIT
  • Alex Douglas, Managing Director, Business Development, Head of West Africa, Globeleq
  • Gridworks
  • Chair: Lauren McEvatt, Managing Director, Morpeth Consulting
  • Eddie Malone, Head of Water, DIT
  • Philip Foster, Founder and CEO, Aqua Africa
  • Uzi Sezer, General Coordinator, Water Infrastructure Projects, ERG International 
  • Lina Osman, Head, Sustainable Finance West, CCIB, Standard Chartered Bank

17:30 – 18.10: UK Expertise – Spotlights iii.

Spotlight on Financial Services

Spotlight on Health and Education

  • Chair: Atam Sandhu, CEO, DMA Invest
  • Tom Attenborough, Head of International Business Development, Primary Markets, Capital Markets, London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG)
  • De La Rue
  • Chair: Roger Martin, Advisory Board Member, DMA Invest
  • David Sheppard, Deputy Head of Healthcare: Infrastructure, Education and Training, DIT
  • Jonathan Ledger, Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Specialist, International Education Team, DIT
  • Dr David Johnson, Academic Director, Planet One Group

18:15: Closing Ceremony and Gala Reception


One-on-one meetings with the delegation taking place at individual Embassies/High Commissions/missions


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