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Accra, May 28, 2020 – The African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET) is hosting a meeting (May 28) of experts from the European and African Unions to share perspectives on the EU-AU digital partnership and explore potential collaborations.

The virtual meeting, the first of four Experts Meetings to be hosted by ACET, brings together think tanks and academics from Africa and Europe and will consider potential areas for collaborations between the AU and the EU on digitalization.

The Experts Meetings are a component of work that ACET is undertaking to inform EU and AU collaboration on digitization. The Africa – Europe Dialogue initiative is in partnership with the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) and the European Center for Development Policy and Management (ECDPM) and is supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.

“Digitalization will guide many aspects of Africa’s growth and transformation over the coming decades,” said Rob Floyd, ACET Director and Senior Advisor, adding “ In particular we hope to enhance the EU and AU dialogue on four aspects of digitalization, to include skills development, investment and finance, regulations and implementing EU/AU agreements.”

According a policy brief on Digitalization for European Union and African Union Dialogue, written by ACET, in collaboration with the ECDPM and the German Development Institute (DIE), “digitalization influences the way we work, live, and interact and creates numerous opportunities.”

It also notes that if poorly managed, digitalization and automation can lead to massive job losses, alongside rising fears among citizens and lawmakers when it comes to data protection, and the unchecked power of monopolies.

“More than ever, it is necessary to understand and harness the power of the digital in order to further the global common good,” says Mr. Floyd.

Other Experts Meetings will be organized for national policymakers, the private sector, and EU and AU officials. The initiative will conclude with a policy brief for senior EU and AU policymakers at the EU/AU Summit scheduled for October 2020.

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