What's in Second Russia–Africa Summit Program & Why Does It Matter?

© Sputnik . Alexey DruzhininRussian President Vladimir Putin speaks during the 2019 Russia-Africa Summit and Economic Forum in Sochi, Russia, on October 24, 2019.
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during the 2019 Russia-Africa Summit and Economic Forum in Sochi, Russia, on October 24, 2019.  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 06.07.2023
The Second Russia–Africa Summit is scheduled to take place on July 27-28 in St. Petersburg, Russia, under the motto "For Peace, Security and Development". The summit aims to strengthen the strategic partnership between Russia and Africa, promote political dialogue, expand economic cooperation, and encourage cultural and humanitarian exchanges.
The Second Russia–Africa Summit is a major diplomatic event that will bring together the leaders of Russia and more than 50 African countries, as well as representatives of regional and international organizations, business communities, civil society and media.
The two-day event, to be held on July 27-28, is aimed at building a strategic partnership between Moscow and African nations, promoting political dialogue, strengthening mutually beneficial economic cooperation, and fostering cultural and humanitarian exchanges.
The summit will also serve as an opportunity to review the progress and achievements of the first Russia–Africa Summit, which was held in the Russian resort city of Sochi in 2019, and to set new objectives and priorities for the further development of Russia-Africa engagement.

The Summit's Agenda

Among the central events that will take place on the sidelines of the summit is the Russia–Africa Economic and Humanitarian Forum. According to its program, leaders are expected to discuss a variety of issues that are divided into four blocks.
The first, titled "Technology and Security for Sovereign Development That Benefits People," is aimed at exploring the prospects for cooperation between Russia and Africa in the areas of mining, energy, exports, agriculture, logistics, and financial security, among other economic issues.
In the second, "Integrated Security and Sovereign Development," leaders will discuss issues related to international security and geopolitical stability, regional security, and cooperation in the fight against corruption and transnational cartels. This section will also address food security in Africa, information security, and challenges to electoral sovereignty.
On the technological front, the forum's third section on "Cooperation in Science and Technology" will examine perspectives for strengthening the partnership in the areas of infrastructure, innovation, as well as the introduction of Russian cutting-edge technology, including digital, industrial, nuclear and space technologies, to promote sustainable development in Africa.
Russian President Vladimir Putin (4R) meets with Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari (2L) on the sidelines of the 2019 Russia-Africa Summit in Sochi on October 23, 2019.  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 20.06.2023
Second Russia–Africa Summit
Joint Political Declaration of Russia, Africa 90% Ready
In this regard, the Russian State Space Corporation (Roscosmos) recently announced its intention to sign cooperation agreements with African countries at the summit.

"One of the key strategic tasks that every state faces in the contemporary world is the use of technologies that will ensure energy security, guarantee the sustainable development of various economic sectors and increase the scientific and human capacity of the country," Russia's Foreign Ministry explained.

Leaders will also address humanitarian and social issues in the fourth block of the Forum, themed "The Humanitarian and Social Sphere: Working Together for a New Quality of Life." It looks to strengthen humanitarian cooperation between Russia and African countries, including in higher education and educational technologies, cultural and sport spheres.
This block will also touch upon the Russophile movement in Africa.

"The human dimension of development has been declared a priority by Russia and the African Union and its Agenda 2063 program. In an increasingly multipolar world, cooperation in the human dimension takes on particular significance," the ministry said.

Russian and BRICS flags at the 1st BRICS Sherpa/Sous Sherpa meeting in St. Petersburg. - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 03.07.2023
Second Russia–Africa Summit
BRICS Expansion Could Be Discussed at Second Russia–Africa Summit
On the sidelines of the summit in St. Petersburg, there will also be a meeting of Russian and African university rectors, a youth program, a roundtable of Russian and African Supreme Audit Institutions, as well as a media forum with the participation of Sputnik Africa and RT.
Both agencies will take part in the organization of two sessions of the media forum, namely "Sovereign Media and the Fight Against Disinformation: the Experience of Russia and African Countries" and "Multipolar Information World: the Role of African Arab countries in the New Realities of International Relations."

"It is crucial for the media to be truly sovereign and be able to convey their point of view to the audience. Strengthening bilateral and multilateral cooperation is now a key agenda item for representatives of the media industry around the world," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

Another issue that could be put on the agenda of the summit at the initiative of the African side is the expansion of BRICS – the bloc of the world's major emerging economies, according to Russian Ambassador-at-Large and Head of the Russia-Africa Partnership Forum Oleg Ozerov. BRICS currently consisits of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
Since 2022, a number of countries all over the world and Africa have expressed interest to join the group.
Ozerov also noted that after the July summit, a "declaration-action plan on priority areas of cooperation for the period from 2023 to 2026 is expected to be adopted."

Against All Odds

In late June, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced that preparations for the second Russia-Africa Summit were nearing completion.

"More than half of the African countries have confirmed participation at the highest level, although they are simply pressed shamelessly, demanding every day that they either cancel their trip to the summit or lower their level of participation," the Russian minister said at a briefing on June 30.

African officials have repeatedly complained about the pressure campaign by Western countries, especially the United States and its NATO allies, against countries that maintain relations with Russia.
In turn, Moscow has repeatedly stressed that the good and constructive relations that Moscow is developing with African countries are not directed against third parties.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, center, poses for a photo with leaders of African countries at the Russia-Africa summit in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Russia, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019.  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 26.05.2023
Second Russia–Africa Summit
US Tried to Talk African Leaders Out of Attending Russia-Africa Summit, Moscow Says
Among those African leaders who officially confirmed their intentions to travel to St. Petersburg for the summit are Sudan's Transitional Sovereign Council Chairman Abdel Fattah Al Burhan, Libya's Presidential Council Chairman Mohamed Menfi, and Somalian President Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud.
Najwa Wahiba, the Libyan presidential council's spokeswoman, told Sputnik that "the summit will provide an opportunity to hold important meetings and discuss numerous political and economic issues at the bilateral and regional levels."
In addition, in mid-May, it was reported that fourteen heads of Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) from Africa have accepted an invitation to participate in the second Russia-Africa Summit and the Economic and Humanitarian Forum.
Sputnik, a part of the Rossiya Segodnya media group, is an official media partner for the event.