Norwegian business delegation visits Benin

The managing director of the Norwegian-African Business Association (NABA) has hailed the creation of new business relations with Benin.

“With a 25-person strong delegation new business relations was created in Benin, says Eivind Fjeldstad.

An audience with Benin’s President Patrice Talon kick-started the business mission that took place from April 2-5.

NABA-member Jacobsen Elektro Group signed a memorandum of understanding with the Government of Benin on April 4, and the same day the first Benin-Nordic Business Forum was hosted at the Golden Tulip Le Diplomate Hotel.

More than 200 guests took part, including the West African country’s minister of foreign affairs, minister of energy and minister for small and medium enterprises.

Norway’s Ambassador to Benin Jens-Petter Kjemprud, Norwegian energy partners and APIEx co-hosted the Benin-Nordic Business Forum.

NABA members Equinor, Empower New Energy, Innovation Norway, Jacobsen Elektro Group, Norwegian Energy Partners and Solar Village contributed in the program.

The business mission with companies from the energy, technology, fisheries, tourism and media sectors, included the Nordic region’s largest company, as well as the world’s premier business newspaper, the Financial Times (FT).

“We believe this will be the start of a fruitful collaboration between our business communities. We have identified sectors where there are a potential for better partnerships, and we hope new energy agreements, a major technology contract, development of the fisheries/aquaculture and more tourists from our country will be among the results going forward,”  Fjeldstad noted.

In addition to the business forum and audience with President Patrice Talon, the three-day business mission also included a visit to the port of Cotonou, meetings with several cabinet ministers and selected site visits.

Last year, President Talon visited Norway and gave a key note speech at the annual Nordic-African Business Summit, organized by NABA. This business mission came as an direct follow-up to the President’s visit.

“We are very pleased that the President of one of the world’s most reform-friendly countries invited us to come to Benin. This will turn another positive page in the Benin-Norway relations,” said Mr. Fjeldstad.