Goodbye, Lusaka; on to Ahmedabad: Curtain falls on AfDB’s 2016 Annual Meetings

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The 51st Annual Meetings of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the 42nd Meetings of the Board of Governors of the African Development Fund (ADF) wound up on Friday, May 27, 2016 in Lusaka, Zambia, after five days of intense engagements on the Bank’s operations and development issues.

Held on the theme, “Energy and Climate Change,” the meetings focused on critical African economic and development issues, election of new executive directors and the approval of policies, strategies and the Group’s 2015 audited accounts and operations programmes.

“We welcome the unqualified opinion of the Bank’s external auditors on the financial statement ending December 31, 2015. We particularly welcome the good financial results despite the difficult global environment,” the Governors said in a statement.

They commended the exceptional and innovative leadership of the Bank’s eighth elected President, Akinwumi Adesina, for his accomplishments since assuming office in September 2015.

“We also endorse our Chair’s statement in congratulating President Adesina for his leadership and collaboration in ensuring the meetings are a success, and for the passion and vision for achievement and delivery that he has displayed in his first eight months in office,” the statement said.

The Meetings, which have been described as “phenomenal”, hosted more than 4,000 participants and some 6,000 virtual attendees, comprising Heads of State and Government and their delegations, Governors, Alternate Governors, members of the Boards of Directors, delegates, business leaders, and representatives of the private sector, civil society organizations, the media, observers, as well as Bank staff.

Prominent attendees at this year’s Annual Meetings included host President Edgar Lungu and his Vice-President, Inonge Wina; Presidents Idriss Deby of Chad, Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, and Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo of Nigeria. There were also several former Presidents, Prime Ministers and Ministers representing their Heads of State or Government.

“This has been a phenomenal meeting. This huge participation and the presence of our political leaders is a clear signal that they support the important issues we are dealing with here,” said Adesina. 

In line with the theme, the Bank’s transformational agenda encapsulated in the High 5 priorities – Light up and Power Africa, Feed Africa, Industrialize Africa, Integrate Africa and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa, featured prominently in the various discussions and engagements.

These were high-level events on key thematic development concerns of importance to Africa including, energy, nutritional, climate change, ICT for a smart Africa, jobs for young people as well as affirmative action for women in Africa.

Others include regional integration, water and sanitation, green growth, South-South cooperation and preparations for the UN climate talks (COP22) in Marrakech, Morocco.

The Governors fully endorsed the High 5s and expressed satisfaction with the progress made towards operationalizing them. They were particularly impressed with the recent approval of the Bank Group Strategies for the New Deal on Energy for Africa and the Jobs for Youth in Africa and called for their speedy implementation.

Noting that these strategies and initiatives are focused on inclusive and green growth, the governors urged the institution to continue its operational focus on infrastructure, regional economic integration, private sector development, governance and accountability, skills and technology, as well as fragility and gender issues.

The next Annual Meetings will be held at Ahmedabad, about 775 kilometres west of New Delhi, the capital of India, from May 22-26, 2017. Thereafter, South Korea (Busan) will host the Meetings from May 21-25, 2018; Equatorial Guinea (Malabo) from May 20-24, 2019; Abidjan from May 25-29, 2020 and Ghana (Accra) from May 24-28, 2021.

For more information on the Annual Meetings, visit

Official hashtag: #AfDBAM2016