On Saturday, June 15, 2019, a conference was held at the headquarters of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for Peace Research in Yamoussoukro on the theme: “The New Silk Roads, Opportunities for Africa: The Case of Côte d’Ivoire”. This conference, organized by the Association pour la Sauvegarde et la Promotion de la Pensée d’El Hadj-Boubacar Gamby Sakho (ASPP-BGS) in partnership with the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation for Peace Research, brought together about four hundred students, mainly from the Institut National Polytechnique Houphouët-Boigny de Yamoussoukro. The objectives were: to improve China’s knowledge and visibility in Côte d’Ivoire, to present the Chinese development model, with particular emphasis on the crucial role played by the “Silk Road”; to lay the foundations for the bilateral partnership between Côte d’Ivoire and China, between Chinese and Ivorian industrialists, between Chinese and Ivorian researchers and to raise the impact of Chinese culture on the harmonious development of Côte d’Ivoire.
The series of speeches began with that of Professor Jean-Noël LOUCOU, Secretary General of the FHB Foundation. He expressed his institution’s pleasure in hosting this meeting and the great personalities. He did not fail to greet the ASPP-BGS association by highlighting the qualities of the one whose name it bears, the Confucius Institute which helps to promote the Chinese language and culture and the eminent speakers.
As for Mr Boubacar FOFANA, President of the ASPP-BGS Association, he thanked the personalities present and all the audience before indicating the values embodied by the one whose name the association bears, namely the rapprochement between men, cultures and civilizations.
The series of speeches ended with that of Mr Liu YUNSHENG, Director of the Confucius Institute, whose speech focused on the theme: “Equity is a thought of sustainable development for the objective of living together”.
Two conferences were given on the following themes: “Presentation of the new Silk Roads: opportunities for Africa, the case of Côte d’Ivoire” and “Africa and the new Silk Roads: cultural and strategic approach”.
The first lecture was given by Mr. Sébastien PÉRIMONY of the Schiller Institute. The speaker first presented the purpose of the project, which is to put an end to centuries of conflict, war and colonialism. The aim is to put an end to a conception of the economy that favours the strongest and move on to a world of mutual development, co-development and dialogue between cultures. He then described the history of the New Silk Roads Project.
The second lecture was delivered by Mr Pierre FAYARD, Professor Emeritus at the University of Poitiers. The speaker developed the theme: “Africa and the new silk routes: a cultural and strategic approach” around culture, the economy and the strategy of conquest. He concluded by justifying the project for the new Silk Roads with the strategic argument that only those who see far can win.
After the series of questions to the speakers by the audience, the conference ended with a visit to an image exhibition presented by the Confucius Institute.