Bank Group President Attends ECCAS Summit

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The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group President, Donald Kaberuka, attended the 9th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) which took place from June 24-25, 2008, in Yaounde, Cameroon. The event was chaired by Cameroon’s President and current chairman of the sub-regional organization, Paul Biya. Speaking during the event, Mr. Kaberuka expressed his gratitude for the invitation extended to the Bank Group and the opportunity given him to address the summit. He used the occasion to call for greater regional integration. He underscored the importance of building a common market within the sub-region in order to attain greater and more inclusive growth. He noted that the attainment of the MDGs depended on peace and security, food security, the consolidation of economic reforms, especially macro-economic stability, improving the business environment and expanding the benefits of growth to the poorest segments of the population. Mr. Kaberuka also discussed the Bank Group’s strategy aimed at helping post-conflict countries promote political stability and economic development. He reaffirmed the institution’s commitment to regional integration which is one of the priorities of the Bank’s 2008-2010 intervention strategy on the continent. Such support, he said, would help sub-regional countries revive their economies and reduce poverty, especially through infrastructure development, proper handling of cross-border challenges such as the sustainable management of the Congo basin forest ecosystems, the improvement of food self-sufficiency and capacity building.