Europe needs Africa more than the other way around

  • Now that the climate horror is causing us a rude awakening with unprecedented disasters in Libya, heat waves, forest fires and floods also in Europe and the United States and at a time of military coups in the Sahel and Gabon, anti-Westernism in several African countries, please find below some recent "positive" cogitations on Africa-Europe relations, on the urgent – and feasible – acceleration of SME industrial partnerships and on Africa's modern manufacturing industrialisation.

  • It is clear that today Europe is providing urgent and massive humanitarian aid to Morocco and Libya. Nevertheless, Europe will benefit greatly from the fact that neighbouring Africa, which will soon account for a quarter of the world's population, urgently generates "decent jobs" for ten million of its young people who enter the labour market there every year. This is thanks to the local processing of its raw materials. In this way, Africa will curb poverty, inequality, conflict and forced migration. (19/9/2023) 

“The 'Other' Africa: Its Educated Demographic Dividend, Its Abundant Renewable Energy


Europa has to stop to call on Africa as a warehouse of (climate-strategic) raw materials and green hydrogen or to fill vacancies in Europa, but geopolitically to prevent all the scourges of global warming and forced migration, for an aggiornamento of its own European energy-intensive industry, but above all as a huge market for future growth. Not with "palace diplomacy" like China or with "Kalashnikov diplomacy" like Russia, but with European "manufacturing diplomacy".

In Gabon too, all parents are aware of the value of education. There, too, aunts and uncles sit together to provide a higher education for some of the most gifted of their dozens of children. Their frustration is immense when young engineers, economists, agronomists and computer scientists are still looking for decent jobs three years after obtaining their master's degree, awarded by professors with Western doctorates. They are the ones who are either open to extreme ideologies or – above all – express their anti-Western resentment and support military coups.

Leonine contracts


A large, educated and empowered African middle class is fed up with hypocritical Europe condescendingly lecturing it on human rights, democracy and the SDGs, but at the same time continues to acquire African natural resources and now also green hydrogen with "market-based" Leonean clauses to create wealth and jobs in Europe and thus prevent Africa from gaining practical experience with a labour-intensive,  advanced industrialisation.

Twenty million decent jobs

This Africa says to Europe: ‘We have the huge educated middle class, the raw materials, also the climate-strategic ones, 50% of all renewable energy, the arable land of the world, the future market - 25% of the world's population - and 15 sub-Saharan countries with fairly stable institutions and accessible industrial sites. For now, Europe has experience of modern and complex international industrial value chains. Let's discuss how, out of mutual interest, to transform our raw materials into exportable products, create ten million formal jobs every year, prevent inequality, conflicts, forced migration and global warming, and stimulate a huge market, also for innovative European products and services with high added value. We know and understand each other. Let us work on it urgently.’

Africa is aware that only its participation in international value chains will enable it to master the practice of modern and ultra-complex industrial processes and technologies and to take on the role of orchestrator of international industrial partnerships in the future.

That is why Africa, like all developed countries, is calling for international manufacturing industrial partnerships and foreign direct investments. That is why this Africa has no problem with the fact that, if desired, part of the profits made in Africa are repatriated to foreign shareholders.

Changing mentalities, both in Africa and in Europe

Europe does not know the "other" Africa

Interviews conducted over the past year with more than two hundred industrialists, development professionals, academics and administrators in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and France showed that only four of them were able to name three of the twenty fairly "stable" sub-Saharan countries documented each year by The Economist(*). Indeed, there is still a lot of corruption and misery in Africa. However, the stigmatising narrative of postcolonial aid to Africa dominates the mainstream media and gives the impression that “the entire Africa” is not yet ready for modern industrialisation. Quod non. Europe does not know the "other" Africa!

EU governments only must promote the “other” Africa. That’s all

There is a real chance that a simple budget-friendly "whole-of-society" activity will raise awareness of the opportunities offered in fifteen to twenty sub-Saharan countries with fairly stable institutions, a largely developed middle class and abundant renewable energy, industrial investors will lay the foundations for the creation of ten million formal jobs per year and put an end to frustrations, military seizures of power and forced migration.

t les subventions, The Economist du 13/7/2023 conseille à l’Europe de ne pas copier la loi américaine de réduction de l’inflation de Biden car elle nuirait à l’économie mondiale. "Gaspillage de l’argent des contribuables" en dit The Economist.

Side effects


  • In 2050, Europe will have only 7% of the world's population, Africa 25%. The massive industrial partnerships between the AU and the EU create a powerful geopolitical understanding between neighbours with cultural and historical ties capable of dominating global consultations on issues on issues that matter such as climate, energy, necessary human behaviour changes and international conflicts.


  • The Economist of 13/7/2023 advises Europe not to copy Biden's US Inflation Reduction Act as it would harm the global economy. "A waste of taxpayers' money," says The Economist.

The largest free trade market in the world.

  • Africa's modern industrialisation lays the foundation for the creation of the AfCFTA, the world's largest free trade market with 25% of the world's total population.

Africa’s advanced industrialisation saves the entire planet.

  • The permanent transfer to Africa of European advanced industrial experience makes other continents eager to follow the shining EU-AU example of local processing of raw materials in a climate-friendly short chain and based on global competences and thus protect the entire planet from global warming above 1.5°C.

Europe’s industrial aggiornamento

  • Sooner rather than later, shareholders of European energy-guzzling mid-tech basic industries such as steel, petrochemicals, aluminium, fertilisers, cement, ceramics and glass will transfer their activities to regions with abundant green electricity and hydrogen. They expect that when announcing their emission-free deallocation to Africa, their share will shoot through the roof, especially when they simultaneously lay the foundation for a modern manufacturing industrialisation of the whole of Africa and for the largest free trade market in the world. The loss of jobs in energy-intensive industry in Europe will force Europe to accelerate innovation in high-tech, more climate-friendly and more recyclable products suitable for global markets and overcompensate for lost jobs in “industries of the past century”.


And how Africans could win it

Jobs, that is what Africa is concerned about

Africa's advanced industrialisation in four phases

GRAND INGA hydropower project DRCongo = 35 nuclear reactors

Industrialisation of ten “stable” Sub-Saharan countries accelerates the prosperity of the whole of Africa


D4D - Digital for Development

Turning challenges into solutions

African green hydrogen silences Putin

Geopolitics energy transformation. The hydrogen factor

A better way to help poor countries fight climate change

Africa, the solution, not a victim of global climate change

The future of work in Africa. The role of digital technologies

Green hydrogen, a breakthrough in Africa’s industrialisation

EU governments only must promote the “other” Africa. That’s all

Africa's economic transformation : the role of Chinese investment

VUB-report_Future development cooperation: industrialisation Africa

The great illusion of ‘Start-ups’, 'Micro-SMEs’ and 'Business Incubators'

Circular Know-How Economy Africa-Europe SMEs & Young Professionals

Book (Dercon) “Gambling on development”. Why some countries win and others lose

Coincidence ‘Climate crisis-COVID19-demography Africa’. Unprecedented opportunities for Industry-EU and Industry Africa


(*) The Economist Democracy Index 2022 Sub-Sahara Africa (Ranking Feb 1th 2023) 1. Mauritius; 2. Botswana; 3. Cabo Verde; 4. South Africa; 5. Namibia; 6. Ghana; 7. Lesotho; 8. Malawi; 9. Madagascar; 10. Senegal;  11. Zambia; 12. Liberia; 13. Tanzania; 14. Kenya; 15. Sierra Leone; 16. Uganda; 17. The Gambia; 18. Côte d’Ivoire; 19. Benin; 20. Nigeria.

19/9/2023 - karel.uyttendaele{@}























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