Event: Financing for Sustainable Development in Africa

Time: Fri 1st November 2019 at 9 a.m. – 11.00 a.m. (coffee will be served before the event)
Venue: Think Corner (Stage), University of Helsinki (Yliopistonkatu 4, Helsinki)
Organisers: Finnish Society for Development Research, FINGO, Development Studies (University of Helsinki), UniPID, and the Finnish Development Policy Committee
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/385209179049967/
Streamed online: https://www.helsinki.fi/fi/unitube/video/21249

Africa’s prominence as the main development partner of Finland and the European Union is becoming ever more evident. Within the past five months, both the Government of Finland and the new President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, have announced that they will start drafting respective new Africa strategies. With the importance of Africa and financing for sustainable development on the rise, we want to ask: Is there a shared vision between the EU, Finland and Africa on development financing? Where is the geographic and sectoral added value of Finland’s and EU’s development financing in Africa? How can we ensure that the financing strengthens democratic principles and respects human rights? Where private sector financing can and should be leveraged? What is the role of civil society organizations in this puzzle? How to effectively bridge development research and the new policy initiatives?

The event invites academics, policy and decision makers and civil society representatives to debate how the future relations between Africa and Finland and the EU should evolve.


09:00 Welcoming words

09:05 Africa on the rise in Finnish Foreign Policy
Johanna Sumuvuori, State Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs

09:20 The EU-Africa Puzzle: Reflections from the Africa Platform
Paul Okumu, Head of the Secretariat, Africa Platform

09:45 Financing for Sustainable Development and Partnerships in Africa – Panel discussion

  • Saara-Sofia Sirén, Member of Parliament and Vice-Chair of the Development Policy Committee
  • Gutu Wayessa, University lecturer, Development Studies, University of Helsinki
  • Leena Vastapuu, Visiting researcher, Tampere Peace Research Institute
  • Jannika Ranta, Senior Adviser, Confederation of Finnish Industries
  • Katja Ahlfors, Director, Unit for Development Policy, Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland
  • with comments from Johanna Sumuvuori and Paul Okumu

The panel discussion is moderated by journalist Reetta Räty. The seminar will be held in English.

You can find the speakers’ bionotes from the FB-event details (https://www.facebook.com/events/385209179049967/)

Registrations by 29th October: https://elomake.helsinki.fi/lomakkeet/100565/lomake.html