Fund for African Private Sector Assistance

  • Date of agreement: January 24, 2006 converted into a multi-donor agreement with the participation of Austria in October 2010.
  • Current volume of the fund: US $68.92 million
  • Volume of funds committed: US $46.74 million
  • Financial contributors: Government of Japan (US $57.6 million), AfDB (US $10.6 million) Government of Austria (Euro 1 million), and Development Bank of Austria (Euro 1 million).

Background and Objectives

The multi-donor Fund for African Private Sector Assistance (FAPA) aims to support the implementation of the AfDB’s Private Sector Development (PSD) Strategy by providing untied grants for technical assistance and capacity building to African governments, regional economic communities and similar intergovernmental organizations, business associations, market regulatory institutions, business development service providers, business training and research institutions, and public/private enterprises. Grants under FAPA enhance the Bank’s ability to be more active in the upstream phases of the project preparation cycle in order to reinforce the quality of its pipeline of bankable private sector transactions. The resources may also be used to promote innovative programs that specifically support small- and micro-scale enterprises and clean technologies, including the provision of seed money for start-ups, business incubators, etc.
Areas of Focus / Sub-Sectors
The thematic areas covered by FAPA are in line with the three strategic pillars of the Bank’s Private Sector Development Strategy (2013-2017):

  • Investment and Business Climate – Support for enabling policy, legislative and regulatory environment (“soft infrastructure”) for private sector development.
  • Access to Social and Economic Infrastructure – Assistance to regional member countries to address known and targetable “hard” infrastructure constraints to private sector development, particularly in transport and energy. Selected activities in skills improvement and education.
  • Enterprise Development -- Assistance to countries to address specific enterprise-level challenges to private sector development, including skills shortages, difficulties in accessing finance, lack of scale, value chain gaps and weakness.

Results and Milestones

  • As of March 2016, 59 projects approved for a total of US $46.74 million.
  • Average size is about US $850,000 per project.
  • 33% Pan African; 10% North, 22% West, 22% East, 6% Central, 7% South.
  • Activities financed include support for enabling environment (16%), Infrastructure (16%), MSME development (50%), financial sector strengthening (19%), and supporting trade (3%).
  • For more Information, please read the Annual Report

Administration and Governance Structure

The FAPA trust fund has a dedicated Secretariat and a standing Technical Committee with broad representation from across the Bank. This ensures expert review of technical cooperation proposals and monitoring of implementation. An Oversight Committee of donors approves all projects and reviews overall progress and performance of the fund. 

FAPA Cumulative Portfolio of Approved Projects




Short Objective/Description




To stimulate SME growth and job creation through the advancement of franchising in Africa.


Gambia River Basin Development


To finance the services of an Advisory Mission to propose to the Authorities of the Gambia River Basin Development Organization (OMVG) a public-private partnership (PPP) option to optimize the implementation of three power projects. Co-financed with NEPAD IPPF.


East Africa Submarine Cable System (EASSy)


To structure the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) of the EASSy project for development of an optical fiber submarine cable network for the eastern seaboard. Co-financed with NEPAD IPPF.


Growth-Oriented Women Entrepreneurs (GOWE)


To provide integrated support for development of women-owned enterprises in Cameroon.


Shelter Afrique


To improve access to housing, develop medium-sized housing development companies, promote economic and social development and create employment in beneficiary countries.

DR Congo

Advans Congo


To build the capacity of Advans Congo Bank, a newly established micro-finance institution specializing in providing commercial retail banking services to the urban-based MSME market of the Democratic Republic of Congo


West African Development Bank (BOAD)


To prepare the Accounting Procedures Manual and assist with software selection, acquisition, implementation, migration and staff training.


Rosso Bridge


To finance the feasibility study for a bridge over the Senegal River between Mauritania and Senegal to facilitate regional integration and international trade. Co-financed with NEPAD IPPF.


PTA Bank


To implement the new risk management framework and further enhance the PTA Bank’s capacity and growth.


Access (Microfinance) Bank


To build the capacity of Liberia Access Bank, a newly established micro-finance institution specializing in providing financial services to micro and small enterprises in Liberia.




Capacity building of CRDB Bank and SME clientele to enhance implementation of joint AfDB-USAID SME Guarantee Facility


Private Sector Capacity Building


To enhance RPSF execution capacity and governance and support execution of a number of core mandate activities including business information (resource center, magazine, radio programs), MSME competitiveness (BDS centers, mini-exhibitions), special entrepreneurship programs for women and youth, and public-private sector dialogue.


Africa Business Roundtable


To assist the ABR, as a second tier (“association of associations”) private sector representative organization for Africa, to perform a number of core functions that will contribute to strengthening the private sector in Africa.




Strengthening of Business Development Services (BDS) providers and SME associations, in collaboration with International Labor Organization (ILO) and International Trade Center (ITC).


Central Africa IT Backbone


Finalize the pre-investment studies and prepare the project for implementation (technical and environmental studies, harmonization of national and regional ICT legislation); establish a PPP operation for the implementation, operation and maintenance of the CAB project. Cofinanced with NEPAD IPPF.


Franchising Sector Support Program


To provide technical assistance to the Egyptian Social Fund for Development (SFD) and to various stakeholders in the Franchising Program.


African Training and Management Services Project  (ATMS/AMSCO)


To enhance management training and capacity building for African MSMEs through provision of experienced managers on a commercial basis.


Pulse Financial Services Limited  (PFSL)


To enhance capacity of a greenfield microfinance bank offering diversified financial services to MSMEs.


AB Nigeria Microfinance Bank


To establish a Greenfield MFI in Nigeria based on the Access/LFS business model.


Zaarat Desalinization Study


To perform a feasibility study and create a concession agreement for a seawater desalination plant for the Gafsa/Gabes region.


Access Microfinance Bank


To provide management and software training/implementation for an established MFI in Tanzania.


ATI (African Trade Insurance)


To assist the African Trade Insurance Agency, a multilateral organization, to strengthen its corporate governance, implement an appropriate underwriting system, strengthen the information communication system and attract private equity.


Mauritania Mining , SNIM (Société Nationale des Industries Minières


To assist SNIM in strengthening its institutional capacity in the implementation of its environmental Management system and its Strategic Environmental and Social Management Plan.


African Carbon Support Program


To create a carbon trading and CDM preparation team of experts within the Bank's private sector project origination for the benefit of the Bank's clients to take advantage of carbon trading


Central African development Bank


$ 1,000,000

To make BDEAC a reliable partner in strengthening the regional financial market, promoting long-term financing of infrastructure projects, and advancing regional integration objectives


Rural Income & Economic Enhancement Project, Egypt Entrepreneurship & Agribusiness Support


$ 1,000,000

To enhance value chain development for two select commodities (horticulture and dairy); increase capacity of participating financial institutions (PFIs) to provide long-term credit for agribusiness investments in a sustainable manner; and develop policy briefs with a view to influencing the development of a coherent national private sector-led agribusiness development policy


African domestic Bond Fund

$ 1,000,000

To create a bond fund that will invest in local currency denominated sovereign bonds, including sovereign guaranteed bonds of state owned enterprises in African countries.

Côte d’Ivoire

MicroCred Ivory Coast


To assist a MicroCred (MFI operator) to create a greenfield MFI in Cote d'Ivoire.


Investment Fund for Health in Africa


To help portfolio companies improve their compliance to environmental safeguards and social outreach and to undertake studies on behalf of IFHA to monitor and evaluate its development impact and outreach.


Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative


To enhance transparency in extractive industry in Mozambique through communications programs, training and monitoring studies.






Equity and Guarantee Fund for Agribusiness in Africa


To support the creation of a Pan-African fund of funds for investment and capacity building in agribusiness.


Rwandan Development Bank


To address weaknesses in BRD’s operations and systems as recommended in the recently concluded ADB PCR and the National Bank of Rwanda (BNR).


Banque de Kigali


To address weaknesses in Banque de Kigali’s operations and systems to increase efficiency and the Banks capacity to manage increasing loan portfolio in terms of value, diversity and complexity.


Environmental Training for Regional FIs & MFIs


To assist the African Financial Sector (FI/MFIs) to better manage E&S risks thereby contributing to the sustainable development of the African region.


Entrepreneurs Financial Center


To support the capacity development and institutional strengthening of a green-field national microfinance institution in Tanzania.


Entrepreneurs Financial Center


To support the capacity development and institutional strengthening of a green-field national microfinance institution in Uganda.


Inclusive Industries Program


To contribute to the establishment of an Inclusive Industries Program (IIP) that will provide a framework for systematic, integrated, country and industry-differentiated approach to strengthening Micro and Small Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and optimize their participation in the value chains of selected Bank-financed projects.


ECOWAS Bank for investment and Development


To strengthen the strategic direction, human capacity and resources of the institution to enable EBID to deliver on its development mandate more effectively and efficiently, especially through its private sector window, thereby contributing to economic growth in the region.


Credit Analysis and Research Africa


To facilitate the establishment of SME credit rating agencies in five African countries under the sponsorship, majority ownership and management of Credit Analysis and Research Ltd, India (CARE).


East African Development Bank


To strengthen EADB’s capacity to enable it deliver its development mandate more effectively and efficiently.


TA Support to SME focused FIs benefiting from the Africa SME Program


To provide Technical Assistance (TA) and capacity building to up to 20 smaller SME focused financial institutions (FIs), operating in Regional Member Countries (RMCs) in all of the 5 regions of Africa, in particular Low Income Countries and Fragile States


VoLo Africa Trust Information and Credit Bureau Pilot


To facilitate financial inclusion and improve the efficiency of SME financing in Senegal and Gambia through the piloting of an innovative technology-based solution for collecting, storing and disseminating credit (trust) information on Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) to prospective creditors.


BFPME: Boosting Private Sector Development through Small and Medium Enterprise Creation and Expansion


To stimulate the creation and growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and hence the momentum for developing and creating employment opportunities for more inclusive growth and prosperities in all regions of Tunisia.


Skills development in the energy sector


To  increase the competitiveness and productivity of public and private companies operating in the energy sector through the provision of employable and skilled human capital


Identification of Bank's Interventions for PPP


To increase private investment in port development (PPPs) providing increased capacity and efficiency required for economic growth of Africa.




The purpose of the project is to reduce the costs of investing in African securities through lower costs of safekeeping, dividend, interest and redemption processing costs and reduced settlement errors. A seed capital investment will facilitate the set-up of AfriClear, which will provide an efficient, collective platform for technology purchases by African Central Securities Depositories.


Support to African Seed Companies


To provide Business Development Services for at least 54 seed companies supported by the Program for Africa’s Seed Systems (PASS). PASS is a program of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). This technical assistance will help the beneficiaries (seed companies) increase their production of quality seeds for rural farmers. The ultimate project goal is to increase food security and to contribute to the reduction of poverty in rural areas.


Ghana SMEs Business Linkage Program


To help local SMEs in Ghana access new markets and access finance, ultimately supporting inclusive private sector growth in Ghana. The TA project will maximize the amount of inputs procured by large companies operating in Ghana from Ghanaian Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) through creation of durable and mutually beneficial partnerships between the large companies and the SMEs, thus enhancing the productive capacity, efficiency, competitiveness and sustainability of their relationship.


Seychelles MSME Development Project


To enhance growth of Seychelles micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), in order to promote inclusive growth through addressing two main constraints to MSME development in Seychelles: (a) access to finance and (b) entrepreneurial skills. The project will complement legal and regulatory reforms aimed at improving the business enabling environment to ensure that domestic MSMEs can seize the opportunities created by those reforms.


Microfinance Training Course for Policy and Development


To contribute to improving regulatory frameworks and management of the microfinance industry in the COMESA region through training of key policy-makers and stakeholders.


Building Climate Resilience in the Limpopo Basin Project


To foster private investment in water infrastructures and promote SME development in the agricultural value chains in the lower Limpopo river basin.

Côte d’Ivoire

Support for Entrepreneurship Development


To promote private sector development; create a better climate for investments and inclusive growth; and ultimately reduce unemployment, and social and regional disparities.


Access Bank Liberia


To support private sector development in Liberia through sustaining and broadening access to finance for MSMEs and deepening Liberian financial systems, through new product development


Intra African Investment


The project will finance: (i) a main study on the scale, trends, composition of IAI, and impediments to IAI, for targeted potential African countries, which would be subsequently printed and published by the Bank; (ii) a report on the priority sectors with strong potential for intra-African investments and trade with recommendations to initialize such investments, and (iii) reports on the recommendations to two selected regional economic communities in implementing their Regional Investment Policy Frameworks (legal and regulatory changes) to better promote intra-regional and African investments and trade.


Capacity Building for Financial Inclusion in Ethiopia


To advance financial inclusion and improve the efficiency of the participating five Ethiopian MFIs in Ethiopia with the launch of a shared mobile money platform (M-Birr Mobile Money Service), and the development of an agent network that will expand the reach of the MFIs and formal financial services in general in Ethiopia.


The Kara and Lome Market Reconstruction and Traders Support


To contribute to revitalizing and modernizing the women market traders in Lome and Kara markets following the fires that destroyed the markets. Its specific objectives are to: (i) improve the traders’ management capabilities so as to directly impact on the profitability and resilience of their businesses; (ii) improve on the business support services received by the traders; and (iii) promote job creation, especially for the youth.



Support to the beef and leather value chain


Support the growth of the beef and leather sub-sector value chains, with emphasis on value addition, resulting into creation of employment, increase in incomes, reduction in poverty and achieving inclusive growth


Management of Rural Water Supply Facilities by Private Contractors


Pilot project for developing an output based PPP for the operation and maintenance of water supply facilities by the private sector in rural areas


Microfinance Training Course for Policy and Development


To support policy-oriented microfinance training aimed at senior managers from Central Banks, Ministries of Finance, MFIs, DFIs, NGOs and the private sector to ultimately improve MSME access to finance in the COMESA region. The specific objective is to contribute to improving the regulatory frameworks(s) and management of the microfinance industry (or sub-sector) in the region.

Total   $46,742,861

Contact Point

FAPA general inquiry email address:
FAPA Secretariat
Peter Ide, Chief Technical Cooperation Administrator, Tel: (225) 2026 2743
Kazuo Kojima, Principal Private Sector Specialist, Tel: (225) 2026 4625
Partnerships and Cooperation Focal Point 
Shingo Kikuchi, Senior Cooperation Officer, Tel: (225) 2026 1714