AfDB President in Paris for decisive co-financing agreement with French Development Agency

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African Development Bank (AfDB) President Akinwumi Adesina and the CEO of the French Development Agency (AFD) Anne Paugam signed a framework agreement at the AFD headquarters in Paris to increase the joint financing of projects in Sub-Saharan and North Africa.

“This agreement, the first of its kind, is fully in line with the Paris Declaration. It promotes better coordination between AfDB and AFD; it simplifies procedures and thus contributes to facilitating implementation of projects by beneficiary countries,” said Paugam.

Adesina in turn welcomed having an instrument that would develop collaboration between AFD and the AfDB, emphasising that the work was only beginning. “My ambition is to help build a new Africa characterised by sustainable, shared growth that is united, working in peace and security, regionally integrated and competitive worldwide. In total alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), this agreement will enable AfDB to implement five major priorities: lighting Africa and supplying it with energy, feeding Africa, integrating Africa, industrialising Africa and improving the quality of life of the people of Africa, in order to strengthen development and the fight against climate change over the continent.”

Unlocking the potential of co-financing

The agreement will also increase the number and volume of co-financing arrangements between the two institutions. The goal, said Paugam, is to “leverage resources and share expertise to meet the ambitious roadmap of the SDGs.” 

The African Development Bank is the AFD’s biggest co-financier among regional multilateral donors. Between 2005 and 2014, 36 projects were co-financed by the Bank and AFD. The two institutions jointly finance projects in the infrastructure, energy, transport, water and sanitation and education sectors.

“Embodying a new generation of donor partners”

Paugam recalled that the agreement represented, “opportunities for activities, and also challenges and a common responsibility for achieving results on the ground and for embodying a new generation of donor partners.”

Both the AfDB and AFD have engaged in development financing for several decades, and have undergone major transformations that have resulted in the convergence of their visions and strategies. Both institutions have committed to reconciling development and climate, particularly through the financing of renewable energy.

The two leaders concurred that the collaboration between the African Development Bank and AFD demonstrates that a lasting, trusting relationship has grown up between the two parties – one that extends beyond projects. Adesina and Paugam signed the agreement in the presence of representatives of operational teams and partners of the AfDB and AFD, who will be involved in putting the agreement into action.

About the AFD

The French Development Agency (Agence Française de Développement) is a public financial institution that implements the policy defined by the French Government, acting to combat poverty and promote sustainable development. In 2014, the AFD spent €8.1 billion on financing projects in developing countries and the French overseas provinces. While the AFD finances and supports all development actors in more than 90 countries, its priority intervention zone remains Africa, which accounted for 36.5% of its activity and €2.95 billion of its commitments in 2014. The AFD has a network in Sub-Saharan Africa of 30 branches and representative offices. Its mandate covers all the countries of the region.

About the African Development Bank

The agreement establishing the African Development Bank (AfDB) was signed in 1963 and the Bank launched its first activities in 1966. Its mission is to promote sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction in Africa. 81 member countries have subscribed to the AfDB’s authorised capital, including 54 independent African countries (regional member countries) and 27 non-African countries (non-regional member countries). Under article 8 of the agreement establishing the AfDB, the Bank may establish special funds or manage special funds intended to serve its goals within the context of its functions. In accordance with this provision, the African Development Fund (ADF) was created in 1972 with non-African States, and the Nigeria Trust Fund (NTF) was created in 1976 with the Government of Nigeria.

In 2014, the AfDB Group financed 232 operations totalling €6.3 billion in the areas of infrastructure, finance, agriculture and rural development, the social sector, integrated projects, the industrial and mining sector and the environment. Since its creation, the Group has financed 4,185 loans and grants totalling €91 billion. The AfDB operates closer to its customers because it has representation in 38 African countries.