The II Russia-Africa Summit has completed its work, the main events of which took place in St. Petersburg on June 27–28. The Russian Geographical Society took an active part in them.
At the main site of the forum, unique documents from the Scientific Archive of the Russian Geographical Society were presented, illustrating the significant contribution of the Russian Geographical Society to the formation and development of domestic African studies. More than 200 summit participants visited the Society’s headquarters in St. Petersburg on July 27, 28 and 29. In the historical building in Grivtsova Lane, representatives of Burkina Faso, Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Uganda, Egypt, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, the Republic of South Africa, the Republic of Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Togolese Republic, Zambia, Germany, France, Central African Republic, Ethiopia, Tunisia, Djibouti, Mali, Democratic Republic of Congo.
As part of the cultural program of the summit, the scientific library of the Russian Geographical Society prepared an exhibition of books by Russian travelers who explored Africa in the second half of the 19th century. The guests paid special attention to the publication of the report of the expedition of mining engineer Yegor Kovalevsky in 1847 about the trip to Egypt, Sudan and Western Ethiopia. It was organized at the request of the Egyptian Pasha Muhammad Ali for the search and exploration of gold. The instructions compiled for the expedition by academician Karl Baer indicate that the contribution of Russian travelers will contribute to the connection of the Russian Geographical Society with world science in the study of the most important problems of geography and ethnography of Africa.
Originals from the collection of the Cartographic Fund of the Russian Geographical Society aroused genuine interest among the summit participants. Among them is the 1893 Map of Africa and Arabia, created by Baron Nikolai Kaulbars. This is the first relatively accurate Russian map compiled from foreign and Russian data with toponyms in Russian.
On July 29, the head of the federal agency Rossotrudnichestvo, Evgeny Primakov, met with participants in the New Generation program in the Great Hall of the Russian Geographical Society Headquarters. The head of the agency spoke about plans to expand the geography of “Russian houses” in the world. During the conversation, the conversation participants discussed issues of cultural, scientific, and information exchange. The meeting participants were given excursions around the Russian Geographical Society’s collections.