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Tunis, 21 October 2008 – The Third Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) Conference on Corporate Governance opened on Tuesday in Tunis, under the auspices of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group.
The conference comes on the heels of the DFIs’ adoption of a common approach on Corporate Governance during the Annual Meetings of the World Bank and the IMF in October 2007.
In a joint statement, the 31 DFIs from Africa, America, Asia and Europe acknowledged the importance of corporate governance, and called for the development of guidelines, policies and procedures for greater compliance of corporate governance principles in investment operations. The DFIs also committed to strengthening their partnerships and sustaining the dialogue to further advance the cause of good corporate governance.
Experts at the Tunis conference reviewed and assessed progress made since the adoption of the Approach Statement, shared experiences and explored ways and means of reinforcing collaboration to establish and promote good corporate governance practices across the African continent. Discussions also focused on how DFIs could add value, in particular, in the current international context.
A review of tools and procedures concerning embedding corporate governance into the investment and advisory activities of DFIs and agreement on best approaches to build on the knowledge and experience that DFIs have accumulated so far were also discussed.
In his opening remarks, the AfDB Vice President for Infrastructure, Private Sector and Regional Integration, Mandla Gantsho, emphasized the critical role of good corporate governance in laying the foundations of sustainable growth and in protecting investors. He urged THE conference to take concrete steps to strengthen partnerships and collaboration to better address respective countries’ needs.
Organized by the Bank Group’s Governance, Economic and Financial Reforms Department, the conference took place a few days after a multi-stakeholder Roundtable on "Governance Assessment: Ensuring Harmonization, Delivering Value", also hosted by the Bank in Tunis.
The conference was attended by senior representatives of the DFIs as well as key stakeholders and development partners.