Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.

Event Reports

Strengthening the partnership between Europe and Africa

African and European parliamentarians discuss ways of closer parliamentary cooperation

Promoting close cooperation between Europe and Africa is a priority of Germany's current EU Council Presidency. In addition to relations at government level, parliamentary exchange plays a decisive role in this context. On Monday, at the invitation of KAS, European and African members of parliament therefore discussed possibilities for closer parliamentary cooperation in times of Corona and in the context of the envisaged new EU-Africa strategy at a digital conference.
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​​​​​​​In his opening speech, the Chairman of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Norbert Lammert, emphasised that the participation of parliaments is of particular importance in times of crisis. It has to be ensured that the need for rapid decisions and regulations does not lead to processes bypassing the parliaments. With a view to a deepened African-European partnership, he pointed out that although the demand for a strategic discussion was raised everywhere, the design often ended in empty allocations and empty phrases. The Parliamentary Conference was an important opportunity to initiate a corresponding discourse and to implement concrete ways of intensifying cooperation.

Die Veranstaltung „Mondays for Parliamentarians“ zur EU-Afrika-Strategie fand im Hybridformat virtuell sowie im Forum der Akademie der KAS unter besonderer Beachtung der Hygieneregeln statt. Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.
The event took place in hybrid format - virtually as well as in the forum of the KAS Academy - with special attention to hygiene rules.

In March 2020, the EU laid the foundations for a new EU-Africa strategy. The German EU Council Presidency is treating the topic as one of its priorities. The summit between the EU and the African Union scheduled for the end of October, where the strategy was to be adopted, has meanwhile had to be postponed due to Corona.

Die Key Note-Rede hielt David McAllister, Vizepräsident der Europäischen Volkspartei (EVP) und Vorsitzender des Ausschusses für auswärtige Angelegenheiten im Europäischen Parlament. Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.
The key note speech was given by David McAllister, Vice-President of the European People's Party (EPP) and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament.

In his keynote speech, David McAllister, Vice-President of the European People's Party (EPP) and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the European Parliament, spoke about the importance of the EU-Africa partnership within the framework of the German EU Presidency. He stressed that now that the Commission has published the relevant proposal, the time has come to include African voices and perspectives. This would then lay the foundation for a joint strategy. A central message of his speech was also the importance of the "Team Europe" approach for the European Union's joint ability to act and for the international perception of the EU as a strong partner - also or especially in times of crisis. Finally, he pointed to new opportunities which could be offered for economic policy cooperation between the two continents through the timely implementation of the African Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

In der abschließenden Paneldiskussion diskutierten Volkmar Klein MdB, entwicklungspolitischer Sprecher der CDU/CSU-Fraktion, die EU-Abgeordnete Hildegard Bentele sowie die afrikanischen Abgeordneten Rimamnde Shawulu Kwewum und Mkhuleko Hlengwa zu den Schwerpunktthemen der EU-Afrika-Strategie. Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.
In the concluding panel discussion, Volkmar Klein MdB, spokesperson for development policy of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, Hildegard Bentele, MEP, and the African MEPs Rimamnde Shawulu Kwewum and Mkhuleko Hlengwa discussed the key issues of the EU-Africa Strategy.

The following panel was composed of Volkmar Klein, spokesperson for development policy of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, Hildegard Bentele, MEP, Rimamnde Shawulu Kwewewum, Nigerian parliamentarian, and Mkhuleko Hlengwa, South African MP. The four panellists discussed topics along the five main priorities of the EU-Africa Strategy, such as the opportunities for increased European investment, shared security challenges, the European Green Deal and the need to strengthen African voices in multilateral fora. In addition, it was reported how the Covid 19 pandemic has affected the daily life of parliament and how they dealt with the many challenges.

In einer Videobotschaft berichteten die Abgeordneten aus Afrika und Europa – wie der außenpolitische Sprecher der CDU/CSU-Bundestagsfraktion Jürgen Hardt – über aktuelle Herausforderungen im Kontext der COVID-19 Pandemie. Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.
In a video message, MEPs from Africa and Europe - like the foreign policy spokesman of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, Jürgen Hardt - reported on current challenges in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The event was a continuation of the African-European Parliamentarians' Conference initiated by KAS, which took place last year in Côte d'Ivoire and brought together parliamentarians from 17 countries in sub-Saharan Africa and Europe. Under the title "Mondays for Parliamentarians", European and African parliamentarians took part in two preparatory virtual workshops always on a Monday, which dealt, among other things, with overcoming the specific challenges African and European parliaments are facing due to the Corona pandemic. This series was concluded by the public event, which explicitly dealt with the EU-Africa Strategy.

Die Moderatorin Christine Mhundwa von der Deutschen Welle in Berlin führte durch die Veranstaltung. Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V.
The moderator Christine Mhundwa from Deutsche Welle in Berlin led through the event.

During the conference, two studies by the Adenauer Foundation on the situation of parliaments in the Sahel region and in East Africa were also presented, which will be published shortly. The KAS is active in sub-Saharan Africa with a total of 18 offices. A particular focus of its work is on strengthening parliamentary work and party systems on the ground.


Dr. Stefanie Brinkel

Dr. rer. pol

Policy Advisor for Central Africa, Climate and EWoH (Projects "One World – No Hunger") Sub-Saharan Africa

Stefanie.Brinkel@kas.de +49 30 26996-3574 +49 30 26996-3719

Anna Wasserfall

Anna Wasserfall bild

Policy Advisor for West Africa and Digital Formats Sub-Saharan Africa

Anna.Wasserfall@kas.de +49 30 26996-3679

About this series

The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, its educational institutions, centres and foreign offices, offer several thousand events on various subjects each year. We provide up to date and exclusive reports on selected conferences, events and symposia at www.kas.de. In addition to a summary of the contents, you can also find additional material such as pictures, speeches, videos or audio clips.