AfDB Group Board Approves Over US$ 187 Million for Five African Countries

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Tunis, 24 September 2008 – The governments and businesses in five African Countries – Djibouti, Nigeria, Zambia, Mali and Malawi – will benefit from a combined multi-purpose funding of US$ 187 million approved by the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group today in Tunis.

The approvals comprise four private sector financing with a combined value of US$ 102.6 million to three countries and two public sector projects worth US$ 73.8 million in two countries.

Under the private sector, the AfDB Board approved a US$ 80 million senior loan to finance the Doraleh Container Terminal (DCT) Project in Djibouti. The project will involve the construction of a new terminal at Doraleh deep sea port capable of accommodating huge merchant ships under a 30-year Concession Agreement awarded to DCT.

The Board also approved an equity investment of €764,782, or 14.23% of the share capital of the Microfinance Bank of Nigeria (ABN) and a grant of € 666,000 in technical assistance from the Fund for African Private Sector Assistance (FAPA). The ABN will use the investment to extend basic lending and savings products to low income individuals and micro entrepreneurs in Nigeria.

The third beneficiary is Investrust of Zambia Plc, which will receive a US$3.5 million line of credit for on-lending to local SMEs. Investrust will also benefit from a US$ 0.15 million technical assistance grant to provide support to SME associations and business development service providers in the country. 

Similarly, a US$ 10 million line of credit and a US$ 8 million contribution toward a US$10 million AfDB-USAID partial credit co-guarantee facility was approved for ZANACO Bank of Zambia for the benefit of target SMEs. An associated technical assistance package of US$ 0.25 million from FAPA in association with ILO and ITC will enable ZANACO and Investrust banks, SMEs, and business service providers in Zambia to build capacity.

Under the African Development Fund (ADF) window, the Board approved a loan of 33 million Units of Account or US$ 51.8 million for Mali’s Growth and Poverty Reduction program. The main objective of the general budget support loan is to assist in the implementation of the government’s Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategic Framework for the period 2007-2011.

Finally, Malawi will receive a UA 14 million, equivalent to US$ 22 million loan to finance the country’s local economic development project which seeks to improve the socio-economic wellbeing of the local population and strengthen economic growth in 4 growth centres in four districts across the country.