The African Legal Support Facility (ALSF) is celebrating the success of the recent 2020 High-Level Meeting of its participating states and organizations that took place on February 26 and 27 2020 in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. One of the highlights of the two-day conference was the capacity building workshop that transpired as part of the event..
The workshop, geared towards the government officials and African lawyers in attendance, was based on the ALSF Academy’s intermediate level course materials, and aimed to strengthen attendees’ capacity to effectively manage and understand sovereign debt, to negotiate complex deals in the mining and oil and gas sectors, and to efficiently handle disputes related to complex commercial transactions.
Sixty government officials and forty private sector lawyers from throughout the continent were in attendance. Private sector lawyers were nominated by partnering national and regional bar associations and professional organisations, including the African Business Law Firms Association (ABLFA), the East African Law Society (EALS), the International Training Centre in Africa for Francophone Lawyers (CIFAF) and the Southern African Development Community Lawyers Association (SADCLA). The topics chosen for the training were derived from the needs identified by the participants during the three ALSF Academy trainings conducted in the previous year.
Following the training, the participants stated that they were happy with the themes addressed and the practical exercises provided, and that both would be beneficial in their daily practice. The initiative was lauded, and participants recommended that this type of training be organized more regularly by the ALSF Academy.
The ALSF Academy's capacity building courses and materials are also accessible online via the ALSF Academy Capacity Building Portal (www.alsf.academy), which hosts all of the ALSF Academy’s virtual training courses as well as relevant articles, templates, model agreements, and links to relevant sites.
The High-Level Meeting was also an opportunity to discuss the future of the ALSF and to call on the ALSF’s Regional Member Countries to contribute to the financial resources of the ALSF in a bid to boost its ability to support African countries with their creditor litigation and negotiations of complex commercial transactions.
Similar ALSF Academy sessions were held last year in Kigali, Rwanda Cotonou, Benin and Accra, Ghana.
The members commended the continued donor support to the Facility and appealed to them to continue their contribution to enhance the impact of the Facility’s interventions for sustainable development of the continent.
Created by the African Development Bank in 2010, the ALSF supports governments in negotiating complex commercial transactions, providing legal and technical assistance in public-private partnership projects across the oil and gas, mining and energy sectors, and covering sovereign debt issues and creditor litigation.
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