Russia-Africa Forum in Sochi

  • 23rd October 2019
  • by secretary
23 – 24 October 2019. Sochi, Russia.The first Russia-Africa Summit and Economic Forum, co-chaired by Russia and Egypt.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah el-Sisi addressed the plenary session of the forum and held a working breakfast with heads of Africa’s leading regional organisations. 
The two-day forum is expected to be attended by more than 3,000 representatives of African businesses. Trade, economic and investment agreements are expected to be signed between Africa and Russia. The two-day Russia-Africa summit brings together over 3,000 guests, including 44 presidents and prime ministers of African nations – among others:

  • President of the Republic of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa  
  • President of Republic of Namibia Hage Gottfried Geingob 
  • Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia 
  • President of the Central African Republic (CAR) Faustin-Archange Touadera  
  • President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo Felix Tshisekedi 
  • President of the Republic of Uganda Yoweri Kaguta Museveni 
  • President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Muhammadu Buhari 
  • Chairman of the Sovereignty Council of Sudan Abdel Fattah al-Burhan 

Plenary session Russia and Africa: Uncovering the Potential for Cooperation 

  • Address by the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin 
  • Address by the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt Abdelfattah el-Sisi. 
  • H.E. Amani Abou-Zeid — Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, African Union Commission
  • Dmitry Kobylkin — Minister of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation
  • Andrey Kostin — President and Chairman of the Management Board, VTB Bank
  • Phuthi Mahanyele-Dabengwa — Chief Executive Officer, Naspers Ltd
  • Benedict Okey Oramah — President, Chairman of the Board of Directors, African Export–Import Bank (Afreximbank)
  • Maxim Oreshkin — Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation
  • Andrey Slepnev — Chief Executive Officer, Russian Export Center
  • Stergomena Lawrence Tax — Executive Secretary, Southern African Development Community (SADC)

Russian President Vladimir Putin vowed to double Russia’s trade with Africa in the next five years, speaking at the opening ceremony of the Russia-Africa summit. Putin said Russia was currently one of the ten largest food suppliers to Africa, noting that the volume of agricultural trade was already at a higher level than export of arms. 

“Export of weapons stands at $15 billion, and agricultural products have already reached that mark, in my opinion, of $25 billion. Russian companies have long and successfully worked with partners from various sectors of the African economy and were determined to increase the trade. “

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi, who co-chairs the summit with Putin, on his part invited “all private companies in Russia and other countries, as well as international financial organisations to cooperate and invest in Africa.” “Now is the right time for this,” Sisi concluded.

Sustainable Partnership in Agriculture: Institutions, Tools, and Guarantees

The steady development of African countries in the last few years, together with growing populations and income levels are all factors helping to boost agricultural production. However, a deficit of modern technology, lack of land suitable for farming, and a shortage of qualified personnel mean that the needs of the African market have not been fully met. 

Russia’s unique geographic conditions, together with its vast land and water resources, provide the country with enormous agricultural potential. In the past few years, Russian companies have taken active steps to increase exports of agricultural products and food. 

Indeed, Russia is already one of the ten largest food suppliers to Africa. However, a range of barriers related to infrastructure is currently hindering effective trade. Removing these could help collaboration reach an entirely new level. 
  • What can be done to build an effective logistics infrastructure aiming to boost partnerships with African countries? 
  • What is needed to develop mutually beneficial partnerships between Russia and Africa in the trade of agricultural products and food? 
  • What are the prospects today for Russian investment in agricultural production and infrastructure in African countries?

Moderator: Albert Davleev — President, Agrifood Strategies


  • Hon. Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo — Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment of the Federal Republic of Nigeria
  • Yehia Zakaria El Shafei — Chief Executive Officer, United Oil Processing and Packaging
  • Selim Basak — Managing Partner, Gemcorp Capital
  • Andrey Guryev — Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Management Board, PhosAgro
  • Eduard Zernin — Executive Director, Russian Union of Grain Exporters
  • Sergey Kislov — President, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Agroholding Yug Rusi
  • Dmitry Konyaev — Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors, URALCHEM
  • Holger Kray (see picture) — Head of the Africa Policy Unit, World Bank Group
  • Sergey Levin — Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Russian Federation
  • Angela Ndambuki — Chief Executive Officer, Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Front row participants:

  • Ksenia Bolomatova — Deputy Director General, United Grain Company
  • Natalia Zagorskaya — General Director, LKHP Kirova
  • Sergey Ivanov — Executive Director, EFKO Management Company
  • Vasily Lavrovsky — Advisor to the Director of the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance

Russia and Africa: Science, Education, and Innovation for Economic Development

The accelerated development of both Russia’s and Africa’s economic potential is inextricably linked to scientific output and the improvement of general education and professional training. The 21st century has heralded the rise of the knowledge economy. Scientific research and development results in new products and industries, and is able to make a vital contribution to tackling current social and economic challenges facing our countries. The Soviet Union made an invaluable contribution to developing the scientific and educational potential of a number of African countries. 

  • What can Russia offer today in terms of developing science and education in Africa, particularly as part of the African Union’s Agenda 2063? 
  • What new opportunities does cooperation in science and education with countries of the African continent present to Russia?

Moderator: Irina Abramova — Director, Institute for African Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences; Corresponding Member, Russian Academy of Sciences


  • Yuriy Balega — Vice-President, Russian Academy of Sciences
  • H.E. Abdoulaye Yero Balde — Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research of the Republic of Guinea
  • Aiah Gbakima — Minister of Technical and Higher Education of the Republic of Sierra Leone
  • Pavel Zenkovich — First Deputy Minister of Enlightenment of the Russian Federation
  • H.E. Hala Helmy Elsaid Younes — Minister of Planning, Monitoring and Administrative Reform of the Arab Republic of Egypt
  • Mikhail Kotyukov — Minister of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation
  • H.E. Mohamed Methqal — Ambassador, General Director, Moroccan Agency for International Cooperation
  • Igor Morozov — Deputy Chairman, Committee for Science, Education, and Culture of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation
  • H.E. Maria do Rosario Braganca Sambo — Minister of Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation of the Republic of Angola
  • Hon. Elioda Tumwesigye — Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation of the Republic of Uganda
  • Vladimir Filippov — Rector, Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia