APSACO - African Peace and Security Annual Conference - 3rd Edition


2:00 pm June 2019


5:45 pm June 2019

Africa's Place and Influence in a Changing World

By invitation

Policy Center for the New South, Rabat

The idea of a united Africa stems from the desire to take control of the economic, political and strategic destiny of African nations. The Organization of African Unity and then the African Union were created as a process of ownership of the continent's challenges, in a context of insecurity and governance crises. Faced with these internal challenges, and given the global geostrategic changes, Africans have no alternative but to take charge of their destiny so as to play a prominent role in the world of tomorrow.

In recent years, the African continent has been involved in the resolution of crises, the processes of political transitions, the institutionalization of relations with major international powers, continental economic integration, and the quest for an economic model. Yet, Africa still finds difficulties in having a leading role in the international environment.

What are Africa's forms of influence in a mutating world and what place does it hold in the international arena? Can African states collectively build the power to project the continent as a global actor?

It is undeniable that Africa has many assets to play a role in international affairs. The first consideration is that major powers and international organizations recognize the African Union as a partner for the establishment and management of multilateral cooperation. Secondly, the geo-economic attractiveness of the continent and the game of international powers offer Africans opportunities for global positioning. Moreover, the African continent and its many arable lands represent the greatest growth potential of agricultural production. In addition, the rise of the middle class, the normalization of the business climate, demographic dynamism and economic diversification are all factors favoring integration of Africa into a globalizing world. The emergence of a new generation of political, entrepreneurial and intellectual leaders, attached to the collective approach in the management of African issues, contributes to the paradigmatic and functional reconfiguration of the continent's political and intellectual landscape.

This conference is intended to be a moment of exchange allowing the analysis of the place and the influence of Africa in the light of its levers and assets, its history and its ability to overcome its weaknesses to adapt to global changes. The Policy Center for the New South wishes to structure the debate around six issues that determine Africa's ability to gain a global competitive advantage.

Synthesis Report: 3rd Edition of the African Peace and Security Annual Conference (APSACO)

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June 18

14:00 – 14:30


14:30 – 14:45

Opening Remarks

Karim El Aynaoui, President, Policy Center for the New South

Rachid El Houdaigui, Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South

14:45 – 15:15

Introductory Conversation

Hugo Sada, Special Adviser, Dakar International Forum on Peace and Security in Africa

Diango Cissoko, Former Prime Minister, Republic of Mali

15:15 – 16:30

Book Presentation - Annual Report of Africa's Geopolitics


El Mostafa Rezrazi, Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South


Papa Dialo Zator Mbaye, Minister Counsellor, Republic of Senegal

Lassina Diarra, Researcher and Consultant, Centre for Strategies and Security for the Sahel Sahara (Centre 4S)

Eric Ntumba, Corporate and Investment Banker, Democratic Republic of the Congo

16:30 – 17:00

Coffee Break

17:00 – 18:15

Panel 1: Africa and the World or How to Balance Mutual Perceptions

This panel aims to explore the thoughts that shape representations of Africa's reconstruction in both African and foreign discourses. The discussion will focus on the following topics:

• The construction of Africa in the strategic and diplomatic discourse;
• Africa in the eyes of the world through comparative analyses; 
• African perceptions of the world;
• African expectations from the international community.


Khalid Chegraoui, Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South


Koffi Kouakou, Associate, Institute of African Futures (AFI)

Bakary Sambe, Chairman, Executive Director, Timbuktu Institute

Daniel Sidiqui, Former Deputy Force Commander, UN peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA)

Zhou Yuyan, Senior Fellow, Shanghai Institute for International Studies

June 19

09:30 – 10:45

Panel 2: Africa and the Production of Strategic and Normative Knowledge

This panel will discuss the capacity building of African knowledge communities and their ability to address global imbalances in the production of strategic knowledge and the establishment of legal norms. The debate will raise the following salient points:

• The new orientations of strategic thinking;
• Sociology of strategic production in Africa and in the world;
• Convergence of legal standards, a corollary of free trade agreements;
• African paradigms: South-South cooperation.


Badreddine El Harti, Principal Security Sector Reform Adviser, UNDP


Rumbidzai Chisenga, Independent Consultant; former Program Manager, Mandela Institute for Development Studies (MINDS)

Rachid El Houdaigui, Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South

Obiageli Ezekwesili, Senior Economic Advisor, Africa Economic Development Policy Initiative (AEDPI)

10:45 – 11:15

Coffee Break

11:15 – 12:30

Panel 3: Africa's Resilience through Mutual Efforts

The panel's goal will be to explore ways in which Africa can been resilient in adapting to continental and global challenges, by pulling in efforts from both within the African Union framework and at the regional level. The discussion will focus on:

• Emergence of a continental economic model and intra-African cooperation;
• Continental AU Integration Programs;
• Economic attractiveness of Africa;
• Common foreign and security policies for balanced international relations;
• Consistency of national priorities and the continent strategies in Agenda 2063;
• Role of continental institutions such as the AfDB and the regional economic communities.


Ahmed Rhazaoui, Former Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General and the Director of the UN Office for the West Africa

Maged Abdelaziz, Permanent Observer for the League of Arab States to the United Nations

Jonas Jonsson, Head of Division, Pan-African Affairs, European External Action Service (EEAS)

Boubacar Ndiaye, Professor, the College of Wooster

14:30 – 15:45

Panel 4: How is Africa Dealing with Conflict Prevention and Management?

This panel will allow a discussion on African capacities for conflict prevention and management, in the light of challenges, ongoing reforms and the contribution of international partnerships. Current challenges lead to the following considerations:

• Building the security agenda in Africa;
• The role of the African Union peace and security architecture and regional groupings;
• Conflict resolution mechanisms at the regional and continental levels;
• New forms of defense policies;
• Cooperation with the UN, NATO and the European Union.


Rida Lyammouri, Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South


Mohammed Loulichki, Senior Fellow, Policy Center for the New South

Irvine Nii-Ayitey Aryeetey, Deputy Commandant, Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC)

15:45 – 16:15

Coffee Break

16:15 – 17:30

Panel 5: Is Africa moving towards a Collective Strategy Aligned with the Game of International Powers?

The panel invites to study, from an African perspective, the opportunities and constraints of the international powers positioning and the conditions of a tangible African collective strategy. The discussion will include: 

•The strategies of classical and emerging international powers; 
•The contribution of the African Union; 
•The position of African powers; 
•The role of African multinationals.     


Bouchra Rahmouni, Director of Research, Partnership and Event, Policy Center for the New South


Younes Abouyoub, Director of the Governance and States-Building Division for the MENA Region, United Nations

Bronwyn Bruton, Deputy Director, Africa Center, Atlantic Council

Cheng Cheng, Chief Economist, Made in Africa Inititative, Senior Advisor, UNDP Asia and Pacific

Alioune Ndiaye, Lecturer in International Relations, University of Sherbrooke

17:30 – 17:45

Closing Remarks

Karim El Aynaoui, President, Policy Center for the New South