AfDB moves to re-engage with Libya
According to the note, Libya’s new political landscape gives the Bank the opportunity to renew and expand its engagement with the country, a key shareholder with a subscribed capital of 4.057% as of December 31, 2013. Libya also pledged US$ 37 million in contribution to the 13th replenishment of the African Development Fund, the concessionary window of the Bank Group, a clear signal of the country’s interest in re-engaging with AfDB.
The Note proposes that the Bank explore opportunities to work with Libyan authorities and international partners in areas that are in line with creating the basis for promotion of stability and inclusive growth in the country.
Presenting the Note to the Board, the AfDB North Africa Department Director, Jacob Kolster, said that the re-engagement aims at assisting Libya’s political and economic transition while creating a constructive partnership to benefit the rest of the African continent. He added that, given Libya’s immense financial resources as well as its existing network of investments across Africa, an investment partnership could be of strategic value for both Libya and the Bank.
The partnership would enable the government to take stock of the country’s investments, recover the previously ill-acquired assets, renegotiate the terms of existing contracts, and reformulate its investment strategy, particularly in relation to the Sovereign Wealth Funds, with the aim of expanding the size, efficiency and productivity of their investments in Africa. For its part, the Bank is already working with a number of Libyan institutions, notably the Libya Africa Investment Portfolio, and will explore areas of co-financing in Africa as well as helping Libya to diversify and enhance returns on its significant resources.
Thus, the note focuses uniquely on the Governance pillar comprising state institutional capacity building, enhancing service delivery, and creating an enabling environment for private sector development.
“Given the weak state of public institutions in Libya prior to the revolution, as well as the lack of human capital and expertise required for managing and leading these institutions following the revolution, the Bank will support capacity building across a range of institutional objectives including: leadership capacity development, budget management and planning, and strengthening the state’s resilience to fragility,” the Note reads.