Summary of the seminar
The demographic and economic growth of Francophone Africa offers many business opportunities for Quebec, which has one main advantage: knowing the language spoken by a large number of the residents of Francophone Africa. A project is underway that should lead to the creation of a common market and an economic and monetary union of Africa by 2028.
On March 15, 2019, participate in the seminar on business opportunities in Francophone Africa, particularly in Rwanda, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal and Cameroon. Participate in this seminar to learn about different facets of Francophone Africa, including the business culture, legal and tax framework, and potential business sectors.
A unique opportunity to:
- Evaluate the potential for developing your business in Africa;
- Network with other Quebec companies considering this market;
- Get advice from experts and companies that are active on the African continent.
Why Francophone Africa?
In March 2018, 44 African countries signed an agreement creating a Continental Free-Trade Area (CFTA), which will come into effect in a few days. This agreement will foster a near 60% increase in intra-African trade by 2022.
- Bilateral merchandise trade rose to $6.7 million: $5.1 million in exports from Canada and $1.6 million in imports from Rwanda.
- Canadian exports to Côte d’Ivoire totaled $38.5 million, whereas imports from the country reached $319.9 million.
- Trade between Canada and Senegal was established at $52.4 million: almost $49.1 million in exports and $8.4 million in imports from Senegal.
- Cameroon was Canada’s main export market in Central Africa. Merchandise trade between the two countries totaled almost $52.4 million in 2017. Canadian merchandise exports to Cameroon rose to almost $43.3 million (Government of Canada 2018).
Canada has signed foreign investment promotion and protection agreements (FIPAs) with Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal.
Business opportunities for Quebec:
- Cameroon offers interesting opportunities in the mining sector (gold, iron, nickel, manganese) as well as in the forestry (mahogany and ebony), agricultural (coffee and cocoa), tourism (beaches and mountains) and energy (oil and hydroelectricity) sectors. Its geographic location is also advantageous for business development. It shares a border with 5 states, has access to the Atlantic Ocean, and boasts a 1,700 km border with Nigeria, all of which forms a total market of over 300 million people.
- Côte d’Ivoire is involved in a vast industrialization project. The project’s key investments are concentrated in infrastructure, transportation and telecommunications.
- Rwanda is gradually drawing investor attention due to its economic growth. This year, Rwanda has placed 58th out of 183 countries in the World Bank’s ease of doing business index. It placed 143rd in 2009. This indicates that the country has adopted laws which are favourable to creating and managing a company, such as access to credit, recording property transfers, paying taxes and respecting contracts.
- Senegal needs to improve access to energy, infrastructure for production support, and financing. There are also opportunities in the development of the mining sector.
Who should participate in this seminar?
All companies interested in the African market.
A few examples of key industries in these Francophone markets:
- Renewable energies and aeronautics
- Aid for technical training
- Engineering and governance expertise
- Food processing
- The service industry
- Digital technology