The Millennium Cities Investment Day, which took place in London on December 9-10, 2008, was a call to action for business executives and members of various diaspora communities throughout the United Kingdom.
Mayors, ministers, governors, and representatives from six Millennium Cities — Akure, Nigeria; Blantyre, Malawi; Kaduna, Nigeria; Kisumu, Kenya; Kumasi, Ghana and Mekelle, Ethiopia — convened to declare their cities “open for business” to dozens of potential investors. The event was organized by the Millennium Cities Initiative (MCI), led by Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, Director of The Earth Institute at Columbia University, jointly with KPMG International, DLA Piper and the Vale Columbia Center on Sustainable International Investment (VCC). The final program can be accessed here.
On the evening of December 9th, KPMG hosted a special reception for over 130 investors and delegates from the six Millennium Cities. London Investment Day on December 10th was attended by over 70 business representatives from the UK and delegates from the six Millennium Cities. The event was opened by Nigel Knowles, Joint CEO, DLA Piper and featured speeches by Lord Michael Hastings, Global Head of Citizenship and Diversity at KPMG International and Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, Director of the Earth Institue. Kandeh K. Yumkella, the Director-General of UNIDO, was the keynote speaker at lunch on December 10th.
The special event benefited from the participation of the Governor of the State of Ondo, (Nigeria), Olesugun Agagu; the Governor of the State of Kaduna (Nigeria), Mohamed Namadi Sambo; the President of the State of Tigray (Ethiopia), Tsegay Berhe; the Mayor of Kisumu (Kenya), Samuel Okello; the Mayor of Mekelle (Ethiopia), Feseha Zerihun; as well as the Kenyan Minister of Planning, Wylciff Ambetsa Oparanya and the Malawian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Francis Moto.
The events showcased commercially viable investment opportunities in the participating cities identified by the MCI, KPMG and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and the delegations from the Millennium Cities had a chance to meet interested potential investors in separate meeting rooms after the main event.
Several other materials were made available at the conference including:
• “Investment Opportunities for Development,” a UNIDO report on investment opportunities in four Millennium Cities: Akure, Blantyre, Kisumu, and Kumasi.
• “Ondo Sate Nigeria: Market feasibility study for sustainable development” a KPMG report.