21 February, 2022
By Mohamed Adow
After years of delays, the sixth summit of the European Union (EU) and African Union (AU) heads of state and government will take place in Brussels, Belgium, on February 17 and 18, under the joint chairmanships of the host country and Senegal.
The summit is important owing to its potential to reset the Europe-Africa relationship in the changed context of post-Covid-19 green recovery, and the entire question of climate change as a looming emergency.
It is coming in a year in which both continents seek to extend their geopolitical roles and economically transform their peoples’ livelihoods after suffering the consequences of the pandemic.
It is, therefore, a crucial event to reorient Europe-Africa relations and to create a coherent, encompassing, and truly collaborative strategy that builds on previous successes, through renewable energy innovation and implementation of strategies and issues agreed on in past events.
Africa can use the summit to demonstrate global leadership in climate by bringing adaptation to the heart of the discussions and helping Europe form a more well-rounded international climate strategy. At the same time, Africa can take advantage of Europe’s expertise in clean energy transition, technology and innovation, and financial instruments.