in: Eni World Energy 52, 24-31
With their varied interests and needs, are European and African countries likely to build a stronger partnership? The Summit of the European Union and the African Union (EU-AU) at the end of February shows that cooperation between the two continents carries on. Yet, the need for a makeover of the partnership has been increasingly voiced. To ensure that the sustainability transition becomes an opportunity for enhanced cooperation rather than a barrier, the EU and African countries must discuss all implications of envisioned measures and plan for a sustainable future together. To that end, they need to ensure an eye-level partnership, with joint learning and knowledge creation, joint circular economy systems, and enhanced jobs and economic benefits on both sides. They must break out of old partnership patters to address each other’s challenges and support each other’s potential, while acknowledging intrinsic heterogeneity and varied needs as well as the implications of their long history together.