Enterprise Europe Network

Africagua Canarias: Connecting businesses for a green and resilient future

Posted: 02 Mar 2022

Africagua Canarias is an international business event connecting Africa with Europe and the wider world on key themes such as water, renewable energies, and climate resilience. The Enterprise Europe Network Partners in the Canary Islands play an essential role in the initiative by fostering interactions between companies and professionals worldwide.

Africagua 2022

What is Africagua Canarias?

Africagua Canarias is an international business forum connecting Africa with Europe and the rest of the world to work together on ambitious projects related to water, renewable energies, and sustainability. The event, taking place every two years in Fuerteventura, represents a perfect opportunity for businesses and public organisations to meet and find new solutions to pressing global challenges such as freshwater scarcity and pollution, renewable energies, and climate resilience. The initiative contributes to the Africa-EU Partnership goals to strengthen economic cooperation, promote sustainable development, and create long-lasting solutions to boost energy efficiency and fight the climate crisis.

Connecting businesses with the right opportunities

The latest edition of the event took place on 30 November-1 December 2021 and was a resounding success, bringing together over 90 participants from Europe, Africa, and the United States. Representatives from eight African countries joined the forum, including three new participants: São Tomé and Príncipe, Ivory Coast, and Ghana. Virtual matchmaking meetings gathered companies and professionals who shared their experiences and exchanged views on sustainable and innovative solutions to fight climate change. This marked an excellent opportunity to cooperate internationally, hear from experts, and promote clean energies.

The Enterprise Europe Network Partners in the Canary Islands, working together with the Canary Islands Institute of Technology (ITC), PROEXCA and the Commerce Chamber of Fuerteventura, organised 132 B2B meetings and offered technical support to the event. The ITC, an instrumental agency of the Canary Islands government and a member of the Network, also promoted the forum regionally and internationally. This allowed the Network to boost the visibility of the event and set up an attractive virtual marketplace for businesses. Additionally, the Network Partners in the Canary Islands helped companies attending matchmaking sessions put together a compelling business profile to promote their services more effectively. For example, companies were advised to include clear and detailed information about their expertise, successful projects, as well as their latest products and services. This helped them generate more meeting requests and attract the right business partners.

 

The Enterprise Europe Network Canarias: A bridge between Europe and Africa

The Network Partners in the Canary Islands have been successful in forging a deeper bond between Europe and Africa by providing a strategic meeting point for the two continents. A clear example are the projects developed by ITC for water purification and energy supply like DESAL + LIVING LAB or CLIMARISK. The DESAL+LIVING LAB project spearheaded a research and innovation desalinisation hub with several experimental and on-site locations across the Canary Islands. For its part, CLIMARISK offers a modular power, water and cooling system in response to humanitarian crises and emergency situations. Both projects address pressing needs of many developing areas of the African continent by providing clean water and sustainable energy. This expertise has positioned the ITC as a trusted knowledge hub for many African countries, including Morocco, Senegal, and Mauritania.

The Enterprise Europe Network Partners in the Canary Islands also support companies working in Africa by connecting the Network local contact points with the Canary Islands and the rest of the world. The regional chambers of commerce of the Gran Canaria and Tenerife, which are partners of the Network’s consortium in the Canary Islands, have launched dedicated activities to promote international initiatives in Africa. Additionally, the Network puts regional stakeholders in contact with specific activities and services in Africa. One of the companies that benefited from these services is ECOS, a Canarian SME that specialises in new technologies to obtain fresh water and manage wastewater. Thanks to the Network’s advisers, ECOS teamed up with a company working in Africa to collaborate on a project in Mauritania.

If a company is interested in working in Africa on topics such as sustainability and climate resilience, they can count on us. We are committed to helping businesses grow in a green and responsible way: we can share our knowledge, connect them with the right partners, and show them the best strategies to navigate local contexts.

Our mission is to create not only a network of companies and professionals but also a place for opportunities to grow and projects to thrive. Fostering a close EU-Africa partnership is essential for a secure, sustainable, and resilient business environment in a globalised world. The Network is ready to support this mission.

About the author

Teresa Rodríguez is a General Network Advisor and Scale-up Advisor. She works as a Project Technician at the Innovation Department of the ITC. She has been part of the Enterprise Europe Network Canarias since 2008, where she supports internationalisation, financing, EU funding and transnational technology transfer to SMEs and R&D centres in the Canary Islands.

Benito Brito is a communication technician at the ITC. He holds a degree in Journalism, as well as a master’s in organizational communication.

The article was co-authored by Ruxandra-Laura Bosilca, PhD, Social Media and Community Manager for Enterprise Europe Network.

Disclaimer

The information and views set out in this blog are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.