PRESS RELEASE: Inaugural Two-Day Meeting Signals Major Growth in Opportunities and Economic Ties between Canada and Africa


Inaugural Two-Day Meeting Signals Major Growth in Opportunities and Economic Ties between Canada and Africa 

Leading CEOs and government leaders to convene in Botswana on 26 and 27 March 2019

The Canada–Africa Chamber of Business is pleased to announce the inaugural Canada-Africa Business Conference, taking place on 26 and 27 March 2019 in Gaborone, Botswana. 

Global Affairs Canada, comprising the Canadian government’s international and trade departments, is a leading partner at the conference. The Canadian global, engineering and management consulting firm Hatch is backing the two-day conference as its Premier sponsor.

The conference will focus on developing, financing and implementing projects in the SADC region and across Africa.

Ahead of the conference, Botswana President Dr. Mokgweetsi Masisi’s intent has been clear for Botswana’s role in Africa: “When we go after our investors we focus sharply,” he told investors recently. “Though we have a small population we have a number of comparative advantages.”

First Lady Neo Masisi has a special interest in healthcare and safety, a key sector of focus for the conference.

Excitement in Canada is growing exponentially. Managing Director of Hatch Africa, Europe, Middle East Pierre Olivier, speaking in Johannesburg, says that “as a global professional services provider, we feel we have a responsibility to do what we can to close the skills gap, improve education, and embrace diversity as a catalyst for creating decent work, sustainable growth, and a lasting transformation. We are proud to be a part of building a stronger, more inclusive Africa”.

Canadian Minister of Trade Diversification Jim Carr, who holds what is a newly created cabinet post in the Canadian government, has referred to opportunities in Africa in the context of expanding trade beyond North America.  Canadian Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade Diversification, Omar Alghabra, attended the Africa Investment Forum in Johannesburg this past November.   

“I have never seen Canada better positioned for Africa”, says Bruce Shapiro, President of The Canada-Africa Chamber, on the sidelines of a recent reception in Canada with the Ethiopian Minister of Trade. “It is great news for Africa and Canada. As the worlds best performing G7 economy, Canada has been the least engaged economically with Africa due to historically fewer connections. That is changing rapidly. The power of capital investment and trade that can follow the emerging trend is enormous”.

“We have been promoting investment into Africa’s natural resources sector for two decades,” says Wayne Floreani, Vice President of MineAfrica Inc. and a long-time Director of The Canada-Africa Chamber of Business. “In addition to the more traditional investment destinations of South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and West Africa we are starting to see exciting new investment opportunities in the natural resource sectors of countries such as Ethiopia, Sudan and Zimbabwe”.

"Due to the strong and trusted Canadian brand, we are well positioned to play a leading role in the emergence of African economies, as we have already seen with the mining industry," says Sunir Chandaria, Hon. Consul of Kenya in Toronto and one of Canada's top entrepreneurs and investors.  "Together with the Canadian government’s commitment to diversification and expansion of global trade relations, the enthusiasm of leading Canadian business executives and entrepreneurs across various sectors signals an exciting era of growth on the youngest continent in the globe.”

The Chandaria Family is actively invested across the continent already and welcomes the inaugural Canada-Africa Business Conference, an occasion where Conros Corporation, the Family firm, plans to assist in promoting the conference and attracting attendees.

“We look forward to working with The Canada-Africa Chamber in matching Canadian investors and suppliers with the numerous opportunities across Botswana at the conference,” says Norman Moleele, CEO of Business Botswana – the country’s leading private sector, member-funded organisation. “Botswana is an excellent base from which to invest, trade and export to the rest for the rest of the continent, as well as back into Canada.”

The Fraser Institute has consistently ranked Botswana highest for economic freedom in Africa. The country is noted globally for its stability and rapid rates of economic growth over several decades.

CNBC and Forbes Africa are the official media partner for the conference and will be reporting covering the conference and the lead up.

To register to attend and get more information on the conference please go to

Please look at the Convention website to see the agenda, current speakers, VIP attendees, sponsors, partners and other information on the Convention

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