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80 years by your side
when ? where ?
Thursday 02 December 2021
To mark AFD's 80th anniversary, a special event will be broadcast live online on December 2. It promises to be a kind of polyphonic concert, where words, emotions and points of view from all over the world are shared, ensuring a mutual attentiveness, conscious interaction and a fruitful exchange of ideas.
  • What’s it about?
  • The Program
  • AFD Around the World
  • Further reading
  • The replay

For nearly a century, we have been supporting solidarity actions all over the globe, close to the grassroots. We are by your side: you, who live all over the planet, speak other languages, and see the world through different lenses. Your destiny is tied to our own, now more than ever.

This anniversary is an invitation to listen and think about the future, to co-develop for the next 80 years, and to weave productive relationships, across all the regions where the AFD Group is active.

AFD Group's 80th Anniversary

Aware of the past and open to the future, AFD Group is celebrating 80 years “by your side,” to seek answers to the question: “From yesterday’s independence to today’s interdependence, how can we build a world in common by 2101?”

We’ve asked a wide range of personalities to help us seek the answers to this question. Partners, beneficiaries, members of civil society from here and elsewhere: they all responded to help make our 80th anniversary a high point of listening and dialogue.

This anniversary will also be the time to get involved. Two months after the New Africa France Summit that took place in Montpellier, this anniversary will also be an opportunity to formulate concrete proposals for action to build the new paths ahead.

  • Introduction: 80 years By your side - 3:00pm - 3:10pm (CET)

Speakers: Rémy Rioux and Asha Sumputh
The day’s events will be launched with the screening of a film that is at once historical and a forecast of the future, and which tracks the successive reinventions of AFD Group and the development policies that underline its commitment to being by your side. In their introductory remarks, Master of Ceremonies Asha Sumputh and AFD Chief Executive Officer Rémy Rioux will provide a glimpse of what’s to come, including the sharing of personal experiences from around the world in all their diversity, richness and complexity.

  • Personal Stories and Perspectives from here and abroad - 3:10pm - 3:45pm (CET)

Speakers: Séverine Kodjo-Grandvaux, Achille Mbembe, Rémy Rioux
We revisit the history of relations between France and Africa and beyond, between the West and the Southern hemisphere. In a series of short videos, poets, historians, scientists, philosophers, business owners, activists and free thinkers from France, Europe, Africa and around the world share their view of the future and their priorities for the next 80 years, spanning a vast spectrum of what is possible for our planet.

  • Live Sessions Part 1: AFD Group’s Concrete and Innovative Actions - 3:45pm - 4:15pm (CET)

Our partners and clients will stage three dynamic 5-minute presentations on actions and projects supported by AFD Group around the world. These projects are emblematic of AFD Group’s work in a number of regions, and of the innovative solutions being collectively developed.

  • Live Concert - 4:15pm - 4:40pm (CET)

Singer and Musician: Dom La Nena
Now, time for a live show! It promises to be a moment suspended in time, where Dom La Nena, along with her cello and other instruments, take us on a dreamlike trip from her native Brazil to the numerous musical lands through which she has journeyed. A crowd favorite!

  • The Fund for Innovation in Development: Initial Projects - 5:20pm - 5:35pm (CET)

Speaker: Esther Duflo
A look back at the first year of the Fund for Innovation in Development (FID), chaired by Esther Duflo. This initiative supports innovations that help reduce poverty and inequality worldwide. Through financing, the Fund enables innovative research teams to test new ideas, take strategic risks, demonstrate what works and deploy solutions that have the most positive impact, on a large scale.

  • Live Sessions Part 2: AFD Group’s Concrete and Innovative Actions - 5:35pm - 6:05pm (CET)

Artists: Eric Scotto ; Andreata Muforo & Eric Zontsop Lekuikeu ; Lea Zeinoun, Thomas Gonnet & Laurent Marion
AFD Group’s actions and projects worldwide will be highlighted by three more presentations staged by partners and clients in dynamic 5-minute segments. The projects presented are emblematic of innovative, collectively developed solutions in regions where the Group is active.

  • A Drawing Concert - 6:05pm - 6:30pm (CET)

Artists: Jul, Alaa Satir, Clémence Sauvage and Bedouin Burger
Dedicated to youth here and around the world, this multimedia presentation features artists drawing in real time, pictures that provide illustrated answers to the question, “What will it be like to be 25 years old in 2101?” The live show is created in partnership with the Angoulême comic strip Festival, featuring two young comic drawing talents, Alaa Satir and Clémence Sauvage, along with French cartoonist JUL.

  • Metis: When art and development meet - 6:30pm-6:40pm (CET)
  • Conclusions and closing: 6:40pm - 7:40pm (CET)

Speakers: Jean Castex, French Prime Minister; Kristalina Georgieva, Director of the International Monetary Fund; Rémy Rioux, AFD Group's Chief Executive Officer

  • Kristalina Georgieva will speak about the mobilization of financial actors around the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  • Rémy Rioux will summarize some of the lessons to be drawn from the many discussions of the day
  • Prime Minister Jean Castex will speak at the conclusion of this ceremony
Among the speakers who will participate at the event:
  • Esther Duflo, economist, Professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, President of the Fund for Innovation in Development
  • Séverine Kodjo Grandvaux, philosopher and journalist for Le Monde
  • Achille Mbembe, philosopher, historian and Professor of History and Political Science at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
  • Selima Mechkene, Support Officer at Lab’ess
  • Rémy Rioux, CEO of Agence Française de Développement, Chairman of IDFC and of the Executive Committee of Finance en Commun
  • Alaa Satir, designer
  • Lea Zeinoun, Director of Strategic Partnerships at Embrace

Find out more about all the speakers, and read their biographies on the event website.

Present in 115 countries, AFD Group relies on a network of field offices to be close to our partners and funded projects. In September, AFD’s field offices began – each in their own way – to organize events locally with clients and partners, as part of AFD Group's 80th anniversary.

A debate was organized on September 28 at the Résidence de France with experts, researchers and authors such as Yamini Aiyar, Professor Krishna Achutarao, Vivan Marwaha and Krishna Achutarao. On the agenda were exciting discussions about the world as they imagine it and desire it to be in 2101. It was also an opportunity to discuss the importance of climate change mitigation, sustainable cities of the future and the role of technology, and artificial intelligence in particular.

A debate was organized on September 28 in New Delhi

Via live on-stage performances, four artists used the occasion to share their interpretations of our world in the future: Dimple Shah (multidisciplinary art and performance), Piyush Patwardhan, Antra Malhotra and Sanjeev Kumar representing the studio of Ankon Mitra (sculpture, origami and architecture), Ashra (various paper crafts) and Jayanti (poetry).

Find out more about this event

Côte d’Ivoire
A roundtable debate was organized on October 12 at the French Institute in Abidjan, featuring speakers renowned for their contribution to development in the region. Gertrude Koné Kouassi, President of the Commission for digital economy and digital enterprises of the CGECI (Ivorian employers) and Christophe Cottet, AFD director for Ghana and Liberia, joined Séfora Kodjo, Ivorian activist for the leadership of African women and founder of the SEPHIS Foundation, as well as Andy Costa, African cycling ambassador. Their discussions focused on developments in recent years on the impact of digital technology, environmental issues and the role of women in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

AFD's 80th anniversary at the Gulf of Guinea Regional Division

Find out more about this event

In Bolivia

AFD’s Bolivia office launched a call for artistic projects at the end of August around the theme of AFD's 80th anniversary: ​​what kind of world in common will we have in 2101? The selected works as well as photos of AFD projects around the world are part of a traveling exhibition since October 18, 2021 in the four branches of Alliance Française across the country (Santa Cruz, Cochabamba, Sucre and La Paz).


80 years of AFD: dedicated exhibition in Bolivia

On this occasion, discussions around AFD's action and the country's issues were organized in each of the Alliance Françaises, with representatives of companies, local authorities, NGOs and cultural partners. The culmination of this anniversary will take place in mid-December: a reception will be organized by the French Embassy in the presence of representatives of Bolivian ministries, civil society and technical and financial partners.


In Brazil, a fresco created at the Alliance Française de Brasilia by three young artists (Ramon Phanton, Brixx Furtado, Camilla Siren) was unveiled on November 23. By using symbols from the Brazilian national flag, they visually explored different themes related to AFD's work, from humanitarian projects to sustainable development.



Celebrations were organized both in Istanbul and Ankara with the Group's key partners in this country, be they representatives of Turkish local authorities, institutions, other donors or actors in the private sector.


A round table was organized in Ankara on November 29 on the theme of “climate smart cities”, in which the mayor, the president of the Union of Municipalities of Turkey, experts and business representatives participated. 


A roundtable was organized on November 30 on the theme "How to build a sustainable Vietnam by 2101" Researchers, representatives of civil society and the private sector reflected on the actions necessary to promote green growth in Vietnam.

As an introduction to the round table, the artist Nguyen Thi Hoai Giang presented his vision of the world in 2101: “Life in green is a triptych that depicts a world where man protects the environment and finally lives in harmony with nature."

Triptych "Life in Green" / Nguyen Thi Hoai Giang​​​​​

Other celebrations were held: in East Africa from November 22-26, in Vietnam on November 30. And they continue: in Mexico on December 1, in Uzbekistan and Mayotte on December 2, in Senegal on December 3, in the Comoros on December 6, in Cambodia on December 8, in Cameroon and Algeria on December 9, in Indonesia on December 15.

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80 years "by your side" - The ceremony replay

Click here to watch all the AFD's 80th anniversary videos on YouTube

when ?
The Thursday 02 December 2021
where ?

Location of the event

Siège de l'AFD
5 rue Roland-Barthes