On Friday, September 16, in Rome, more than 250 Italian companies and Ivorian government representatives attended a meeting with the President of the Republic of Ivory CoastAlassane Ouattara.

Ivory Coast meeting with Italian entrepreneurs

Ouattara was on an official visit to Italy, where he also met with the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella, and Deputy Foreign Minister Marina Sereni.

The meeting with the representatives of the Italian business community was organized by Confindustria, the General Confederation of Italian Industry, in collaboration with the Embassy of Ivory Coast in Italy. The meeting focused on the opportunities offered by Ivory Coast’s 2021-2025 National Development Plan.

The plan, worth about €90 million, aims to support economic growth and accelerate the structural transformation of the Ivorian economy through industrialization, human capital development, and the strengthening of governance. The ultimate goal is to raise Ivory Coast’s rank to that of a middle-income country by 2030. The plan focuses on the strategic sectors of Renewable Energy and Mining, Infrastructure and Construction, and Agribusiness.

Invest in Ivory Coast. We are a key platform for investment in Africa,” President Ouattara said to the Italian entrepreneurs.

Prime Minister Patrick Jerôme Achi and ten ministers representing strategic economic sectors for the Ivorian economy also attended the event, confirming Ivory Coast’s strong desire to collaborate with Italian companies.  

Presidents Ouattara and Mattarella
Presidents Ouattara and Mattarella

Mr. Achi emphasized how a series of significant reforms implemented over the past ten years have enabled Ivory Coast to grow by an average of 8% per year between 2012 and 2019, doubling per capita GDP in a decade and increasing the population’s life expectancy from 57 to 67 years. 

Africa is a huge market; we need a vision of how the world will be tomorrow to experience it as best as possible today,” the Prime Minister said.

With the National Development Plan, Ivory Coast aims to strengthen its role in the West African region. Our companies are ready to seize opportunities in many strategic sectors, nurturing paths of competitiveness for the benefit of all: local and Italian entrepreneurs, employees, families,” said Confindustria Vice President Barbara Beltrame Giacomello. 

The model we promote,” Giacomello specified, “is, in fact, that of co-development. It sets as its primary objective that of an economic growth that is sustainable and widespread among the population. Although our presence in Ivory Coast is not yet substantial, the country’s economic outlook is encouraging, and it sets the right background for a stronger Italian presence.”

Ivory Coast President Ouattara with Mr. Massimo Dal Checco
President Ouattara with Mr. Massimo Dal Checco

Italian companies show great interest in Ivory Coast. But we are just at the beginning. We must work together towards a strategic industrial partnership,” stressed Confindustria’s Massimo Dal Checco. 

After the event, Confindustria signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Centre de Promotion des Investissement en Côte d’Ivoire (CEPICI) to encourage the creation and strengthening of partnerships between Italian and Ivorian companies. A second MoU was signed with the Ivorian Chamber of Commerce (CCI-CI) to stimulate economic collaboration between Italian and Ivorian operators and create joint investment projects. 

Rome-based Luiss University and the Ministry of Civil Service of the Republic of Ivory Coast also signed an agreement to provide executive training courses to Ivorian government and private sector officials.