The 9th African Development Forum to focus on Innovative Financing for Africa’s Transformation in Marrakech

13/10/2014
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The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) will take part in the 9th African Development Forum, in Marrakech, Morocco, and contribute to high-level discussions aimed to address fast-tracking funding for the continent’s economic and social transformation, and seek immediate solutions to ensure a better future for Africans.

AfDB will be represented by its Special Envoy on Gender, Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, and the Operations Vice-President, in charge of Agriculture, Human Development and Governance, Aly Abou-Sabaa.

Under the theme “Innovative Financing for Africa’s Transformation”, the 9th ADF discussions will focus on mobilizing domestic resources; stemming illicit financial flows; seeking private capital; searching for new partnerships to leverage resources; and financing to help mitigate the effects of climate change.

Expectations are very high, as the gathering will reflect on the objectives of African region in strategic areas such as infrastructure, regional integration, private sector development, trade, job creation, governance and climate change. In addition, a goal is to find a vehicle to innovatively fast-track financing that will bring about a step change on the continent.

The meeting will hear keynote addresses from a representative of the Kingdom of Morocco, Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara, Senegalese President Macky Sall, as well as Cape Verde’s Prime Minister, José Maria Pereira Neves.

The Bank Group will participate in an important roundtable discussion on private equity, the state of private equity in Africa and its potential as an alternative source of financing investments in Africa, economic growth and job creation.

The roundtable discussion will explore ways to accelerate the deployment of funding in Africa by focusing more on capital markets, leveraging domestic capital, seeking new investment sources such as equity.

The panelists of the roundtable include Morocco’s Minister of Industry, Commerce, Investment and Digital Economy, Moulay Hafidh; Tunisia’s Secretary of State for Development and International Cooperation, Nourredine Zekri; AfDB’s Operations Vice-President, Aly Abou-Sabaa; and Nathan De Assis, Executive Director of Equity Capital Resources of Zambia.

Despite the positive outlook for growth, the region still faces an annual funding gap of $31 billion for electrical power alone.

African countries need to develop appropriate policies to attract investment capital, particularly in the areas identified as key areas of growth. The Forum will build on best practices, policies and innovative strategies as well as institutional and governance frameworks. Its aim is to leverage funding opportunities for sustainable development in Africa.

The meeting is being organized by the African Union Commission, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the AfDB, Africa’s premier development finance institution, as well as other key partners.

Carlos Lopes, United Nations Under-Secretary General and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, will chair the Forum, which will bring together Heads of State and governments, business leaders, academic, civil society organisations and the media.