WCEF2022: Call to Convene the African Circular Economy Forum

The World Circular Economy Forum (WCEF2022), which ended on 8 December 2022, brought together 2,000 participants online and in person in Kigali, Rwanda and other sub-Saharan capitals (studios) where regional events were held. WCEF attracted participants from across Africa and around the world representing governments, the private sector, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), national and international experts and organizations, local communities, youth, academics, development partners, investors and financial institutions.

Organized under the theme “From Africa to the World”, the event will discuss both opportunities and threats related to global development, especially climate change protection and nature restoration, youth, infrastructure development and accelerating innovation, as well as fair trade and local value chains.

Emphasis on North-South and South-South cooperation

Participants 6e WCEF calls on all African countries to join the Circular Economy Alliance in Africa (ACEA) and invites all stakeholders and WCEF2022 delegates to support ACEA in the design, development and implementation of circular economy policies, strategies and plans for a sustainable economy. Development of African economies.

WCEF2022 invites the African Alliance for the Circular Economy to develop collaborations with other partnerships such as the Global Alliance for the Circular Economy and Resource Efficiency (Gacere) and other regional networks to strengthen North-South and South-South cooperation. All WCEF2022 stakeholders have also agreed to work together now and in the future to create, plan, innovate, act and share the benefits of a circular economy for Africa and the world at large.

Towards the convening of the African Circular Economy Forum

Also, WCEF2022 invites its African partners, especially Acea and the African Network for the Circular Economy (Acen) to convene the African Circular Economy Forum (Acef). It will be a platform to advance the circular economy agenda in Africa. Its implementation requires the support of African states, which are called upon to remove barriers and promote a circular economy on the continent.

WCEF2022 also encourages African states to accelerate the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) to enhance Africa’s role in global value chains and intra-continental trade. They should also implement circular economy policies, strategies and plans to help mitigate and adapt to climate change and halt biodiversity loss.

The main role of the private sector

African countries are thus called upon to create an enabling environment for the development of circular businesses in order to realize the social, economic and environmental benefits of the circular economy for Africa and the world. At the same time, countries and financial institutions should shift capital flows from linear business models to a circular economy by promoting sustainable financing strategies and green investments.

These investments will ultimately help put the circular economy at the heart of Africa’s urbanization and sustainable infrastructure development. For this, the private sector has its own responsibility. It should promote the development of indigenous technologies and harness youth innovation to drive the circular economy in Africa and globally. Expanding existing circular economy solutions will bring economic and social benefits, while reducing the negative environmental impact of the current business model.

And at this pace, all African companies, individuals, academic institutions and civil society organizations are invited to join ACEN. This approach will be evaluated during the 7th periode WCEF held May 30-1er June 2023, Helsinki, Finland.

Jean Marie Takouleu

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