Projects & Operations

Bank Group Operations by High 5s

High 5Percentage (%)
Light Up and Power Africa19
Feed Africa11
Industralize Africa12
Integrate Africa6
Improve Quality of Life52

The implementation of the High 5s builds on the Bank Group’s Ten-Year Strategy and offers a compelling opportunity to transform the lives of the African people. The year 2016 was the first full year working to deliver on these priorities.

Accordingly, the Bank Group ended 2016 with a record UA 8.04 billion (USD 10.8 billion) in approvals. Actual disbursements amounted to UA 4.68 billion (USD 6.3 billion), 55 percent higher than the year before. Through a High 5s lens, approved Bank Group operations in 2016 are expected to create about 630,000 jobs, many for youths and a fair share for women. These approvals aim to bring electricity to previously dark areas, unlock growth potential for small businesses, nourish thousands of children (curbing the incidence of stunted growth), nurture young entrepreneurs, and strengthen connectivity between African regions and cities.

These impacts will be delivered through enhanced dialogue with RMCs as the Bank gets progressively closer to its clients, in line with its new business model.

Other main highlights include:

  • The largest share of approvals (UA 4.20 billion, or 52.3 percent) went to the Improve the Quality of Life priority, an increase of 14.5 percent over 2015.
  • Total approvals for Light Up and Power Africa rose sharply by 72.8 percent to UA 1.51 billion, representing 18.7 percent of Bank Group approvals.
  • Operations targeting the Feed Africa priority increased 66 percent to UA 868.3 million, taking its share past the 10 percent mark.
  • Approvals for Industrialize Africa increased 43.5 percent to UA 968.9 million, lifting its share of approvals to 12.1 percent.
  • With 492.4 million in approvals, 17.7 percent lower than in 2015, the Integrate Africa priority had the smallest share of total approvals (6.1 percent).

Bank Group Approvals by High Five Grouping

Light Up and Power Africa501,505.66
Feed Africa47868.33
Industrialize Africa30968.86
Integrate Africa29492.36
Improve the Quality of Life for the People Of Africa1494,200.13
Total Approvals3058,035.34

There is no perfect mapping between the High 5s priorities and the operational sectors for which approvals data is recorded. Most sector operations have an impact on more than one High 5s priority area. However, the following convention is adopted in this Report in mapping sectors to the High 5s:

  • Finance is treated as a cross-cutting sector and is mapped to each of the High 5s, depending on the specific operation and its intended impact. For example, housing finance, an emerging area of Bank intervention, is mapped to Improve the Quality of Life; lines of credit to financial institutions are mapped to Industrialize Africa when such funds are meant for on-lending to firms in the productive sectors, etc.
  • Energy supply is mapped to Light Up and Power Africa.
  • Agriculture and rural development is attributed to Feed Africa.
  • Industry, mining, and quarrying is mapped to Industrialise Africa.
  • Multinational components of Communication and Transport are assigned to Integrate Africa.
  • Social services, Water Supply and Sanitation, domestic components of Communication and Transport, Urban development, Environment, and Multisector operations are mapped to Improve the Quality of Life for the People of Africa.

Total Bank Group Lending Approvals by Region

RegionPercentage (%)

Central Africa

In 2016, Bank Group resources to the region totaled UA 609.7 million, with an additional UA 192.71 million of co-financing mobilized. The largest project financed in 2016 was Phase II of Cameroon’s national program to support the transport sector, for a total of UA 228.1 million—36.4 percent of funding mobilized over the year. 

Other approvals were for projects contributing to the Bank Group’s High 5s priority to Feed Africa, such as developing agricultural value chains in Cameroon and Gabon, and supporting youth entrepreneurship in agriculture and agrobusiness in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A Bank-financed ICT operation in the Republic of Congo will help break the digital isolation of the country, especially its rural areas, linking it to Cameroon and the Central African Republic. The project is expected to reduce international bandwidth costs by more than 60 percent; it will significantly improve internal and external communication, boost regional integration, and help diversify the Republic of Congo’s economy.

Eastern Africa

Approvals in 2016 amounted to UA 1,392 million for 37 projects, exceeding the target of UA 1,244 million. Approvals from the Bank Group’s entities totalled UA 1,202 million (about 68 percent of the total), of which UA 788 million (45 percent) was sovereign-guaranteed. Fund approvals (including TSF) amounted to UA 511 million (29 percent).

ADB approvals increased 120 percent from UA 545 million in 2015, reflecting the Bank’s drive to expand its business in Eastern Africa, now host to some high-profile projects. The Bank’s portfolio for the region at end-2016 consisted of 217 projects with a total commitment value of UA 7.12 billion. Infrastructure dominates the portfolio, with 69 percent of approvals.

Northern Africa

Approvals in 2016 amounted to UA 2.05 billion, up 82.9 percent from 2015 and reflecting important budget support operations in the region. Among other operations were two major energy reform projects, one in Algeria as part of the Industrial and Energy Competitiveness Support Program (UA 700 million) and one in Egypt as a component of a broader governance support program (UA 375 million). These projects were classified as ‘multisector’, which accounted for 53.3 percent of the region’s approvals in 2016.

Other multisector operations included economic reform and diversification in Mauritania and export development in Morocco. Dominating approvals for the finance sector, at UA 341.4 million, was a UA 208.3 million loan to Tunisia to help modernize its financial sector. Tunisia also features prominently in the social sector, with a project fostering inclusive regional development valued at UA 140 million. Among other approvals in the social sector was a project aimed at promoting SME development in Mauritania. Agriculture made up 8.5 percent of approvals in 2016, and water and sanitation 5.2 percent.

Southern Africa

Total approvals in 2016 came to UA 507.3 million, mainly for finance (27.3 percent), agriculture (21.6 percent), and water and sanitation (20.0 percent). The largest operations approved in 2016 include lines of credit to the Development Bank of Namibia (UA 240 million) and the Botswana Development Corporation (UA 55.6 million), ADF loans for the Integrated Small Towns Water Supply and Sanitation Program in Zambia (UA 98.5 million), the Mueda–Negomano Road Project, Phase I in Mozambique (UA 53.5 million), and the Lower Usuthu Smallholder Irrigation Project II, Phase II in Swaziland (UA 42.6 million).

Western Africa

Approvals for Nigeria in 2016 amounted to UA 1,310.4 million, half of which for financial sector and multisector (including governance-related) operations. Among other approvals were a public-sector loan of UA 436.7 million for economic governance, diversification, and competitiveness support, and a Bank loan to Babalola University of Nigeria (the Bank’s first private intervention in education). An infrastructure project to rehabilitate roads in the Cross River State, completed in 2016, brought many benefits.

You are currently offline. Some pages or content may fail to load.