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19th Annual 
 Columbia Africa Conference

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Meeting the Moment

October 28th - 29th, 2022


About AEF 2022

We are excited to announce the 18th Africa Economic Forum, a student-led collaboration between Columbia Business School and the Columbia School of International and Public Affairs. We look forward to having you join our distinguished speakers and us as we explore the theme — Africa Today & Tomorrow: Accelerating the Growth of an Economic and Cultural Powerhouse. 
AEF continues to provide a forum for meaningful engagement and thought-provoking discussions, and this year will be no different. You’ll hear from an impressive lineup of speakers from across the region, and even in these unprecedented times, we expect participants to leave with a renewed sense of hope in Africa’s success and to be inspired to do their part in moving the continent forward.

2021 Co-chairs

Keynote Speakers


Ralph Mupita

President & CEO, MTN Group

Ralph Mupita is the Group President and Chief Executive Officer of MTN Group, and formerly served as MTN Group’s CFO. Ralph played a pivotal role in MTN’s listing on the Nigerian and Ghanaian Stock Exchanges. He serves as an executive Board member of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the Harvard Business School Africa Advisory Board. Ralph holds an MBA and BSc Engineering Hons degree from University of Cape Town and is an alumnus of the Harvard Business School General Management Programme.

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Edward Effah

Founder & Chairman, Fidelty Bank

Edward has extensive experience in business strategy formulation, calculated risk-taking, strategy execution, team building, mentoring, business innovation, finance, technology strategy, capital raising, investor relations, managing boards, and effective communication with key stakeholders. 

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Jeffrey D. Sachs

Director, Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University

Prof. Sachs is a world-renowned economics professor, bestselling author, innovative educator, and global leader in sustainable development. He is widely recognized for bold and effective strategies to address complex challenges including the escape from extreme poverty, the global battle against human-induced climate change, international debt and financial crises, national economic reforms, and the control of pandemic and epidemic diseases.    

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Fireside Chats



Yvonne Orji

Actress, Comedian & Writer

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Isha Sesay

Author & Award-winning journalist

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Acha Leke

Senior Partner, McKinsey Johannesburg & Chairman, McKinsey Africa

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About Columbia AfriCon

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Some would say that Africa is having a moment — but those of us connected to the Continent know that the rest of the world is just catching up. 


The theme of this year’s conference, Meeting the Moment, is designed to help us reflect on Africa’s history and our current momentum to build the future. We will celebrate the progress made, and discuss innovative solutions to build the Africa we want. 


With our incredible lineup of speakers, we’ll explore how to harness the digital age, Africa’s status as a growing economic powerhouse, and our unique and diverse cultures as assets that will drive the entire Continent forward for years to come. 


The time is now to Meet the Moment. Join us on October 28th and 29th in New York City for a conference like no other at the very center of business.

2022 Conference Co-chairs

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Sponsors & Partners





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