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9-12 June, 2014 the NABC led the European trade mission to Antananarivo, Madagascar, which was an initiative of the European Business Council for Africa and the Mediterranean (EBCAM). In the organization of the trade mission, the NABC collaborated with the EBDM, Chambre de Commerce et d'Industrie d'Antananarivo, and the Groupement des Entrepreneurs de Madagascar. There was also close cooperation with the Embassy of Madagascar in Brussels.

The trade mission coincided with the visit of European commissioner for Development, Mr. Andris Piebalgs. As Madagascar offers huge opportunities in sectors ranging from energy, agriculture, textile and tourism, to oil & gas, the maritime sector and mining, this trade mission was open to companies from all sector.

The programme of the visit consisted of B2B meetings between the Dutch & Malagasy private (and public sector), sector-cluster company visits, a ‘Doing Business in Madagascar Seminar’ and meetings with government authorities/ministries. The program was finalized in consultation with the Economic Development Board of Madagascar (EDBM) and based on the profiles and requests of the participants. Since the trade missions coincided with the visit of Mr. Piebalgs, there was a meeting arranged with the commissioner in which EU financing options were discussed. The participants experienced this meeting as very insightful.

Overall the participants were positive about the trade mission. They have very concrete potential projects; acquired extremely useful contacts and are in the process of giving a proper follow-up and in an ongoing dialogue with their Malagasy counterparts. A follow-up to this first European mission to Madagascar could be an incoming mission from Madagascar to Europe, which would help increase trade and investment from Europe to Madagascar and vice-versa, and strengthen the contacts between the participants from both counterparts. 


Programme PDF

Practical information

Practical Information & costs

Dates:                    9-12 June, 2014 (arrival on the 1st)

Location:                Antananarivo and surroundings


Costs NABC members - Participation fee: EUR 995,- ex. VAT & out-of-pocket costs: EUR 250,- (0% VAT)*

Costs NON NABC members: participation fee: EUR 1350,- ex. VAT & out-of-pocket costs: EUR 250,- (0% VAT)

*This rate also applies to members of other EBCAM-affiliated organizations


Contact information:

Marina Diboma

Quirine de Graaf



Madagascar is the fourth largest island of the world, located in South-East Africa, in the Indian Ocean and on the Mozambique Channel. Madagascar gained independence from France in 1960 and is officially a semi-presidential representative republic. The 4-year political crises that started in 2009 has come to an end and the country is currently back on the road to political recovery and economic growth. The last held presidential elections were in January 2014, which resulted in the election of H.E. mr. Hery Martial Rakotoarimanana Rajaonarimampianina (Rajaonarimampianina), the current president. His election marks the first democratic-elected president of Madagascar after the coup d’état of 2009 and signals prospects for political stability in the country for the years to come and hope for a drastic increase of inflow of foreign direct investment (FDI) in this country with endless investment and business opportunities and breathtaking fauna.


Economy of Madagascar

After independence and until the 1990s, Madagascar’s economy was dictated by socialist policies. The political instability and at times crises, has influenced its economy in a negative way as it provided investors with an uncertain investment climate.  From the 1990-s onwards, Madagascar has implemented a WB/IMF-led strategy of privatization and liberalization; the last presidential elections, that can be considered democratic, and the huge investment opportunities now offer companies a positive outlook and hence the opportunity to explore and consolidate their business opportunities in Madagascar. Agriculture, including fishing and forestry, is a mainstay of the economy, accounting for more than one-fourth of GDP and employing 80% of the population. Expansion in mining and agricultural sectors is expected to contribute to more growth in 2014. The presence of large oil & gas reserves both onshore and offshore in Madagascar also promise to give a boost to its economy.


Business opportunities

Madagascar is the agri-food hub (livestock, rice, cereals, fruits, vegetables, cocoa, coffee, fish farming) for the Indian Ocean. Also, Madagascar has many untapped reserves of minerals that should be exploited for economic benefits. There are several activities that can be developed through mining exploitation regarding industrial stones, energy resources, and exploitation of precious and semi-precious stones. Besides, renewable energy solutions and telecommunication networks are much needed, and the beauty and unique flora and fauna of the country offer huge potential for the tourism sector. Moreover, opportunities in the maritime sector will follow from an increase in export of minerals, agricultural products and oil & gas.



The European Union will grant to the Malagasy authorities a fund of 455 million euros, and this, in the title of the 11th European Development (EDF) for the period 2014-2020


This European fund will however be released after the establishment of the new government of Madagascar after five years of political and institutional crisis that have lived the island and in the wake of the lifting of sanctions from the Cotonou Agreement in June 2010 and Article 96 thereof, as reported by the newspaper L'Express de Madagascar.

"I said that they are non-repayable grants, which are not new debts to Madagascar.  The amount of this allowance has been fixed according to some criteria, it will thereafter as the absorptive capacity of the country," recalled on Wednesday Leonidas Tezapsidis, Ambassador of the European Union and head of Delegation of the European Commission in Madagascar.

Indian Ocean Times 26-03-2014


Some facts about Madagascar

Population:                          22,599,098 (July 2013 est.) (Malagasy)

GDP growth rate:                2.6 % (est. 2013)

Languages:                          French (official), Malagasy (official), English

Trade mission details

From June 09, 2014
Till June 12, 2014
Antananarivo and surroundings, Madagascar