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The first component of the Enhanced Private Sector Assistance for Africa (EPSA) initiative, the Fund for African Private Sector Assistance (FAPA), was approved by the Board in October 2005 and the original Exchange of Letters was signed between the Bank and the Government of Japan on 24 January 2006.
FAPA was established as a bilateral fund with the understanding that, in line with the Technical Cooperation Fund Reform of 2006, it would evolve into a multi-donor thematic trust fund. This was achieved in October 2010 when Austria joined the Fund and the original bilateral agreement was replaced with a Board-approved Multi-Donor Arrangement. Since 2006, FAPA has received over USD 87 million in contributions from its donors.
FAPA provides untied grants for technical assistance and capacity building to African governments, regional economic communities and similar intergovernmental organizations, to non-governmental organizations such as business associations, market regulatory institutions, business development services providers, business training and research institutions, and to public and 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 medium-sized enterprises.
Good governance practices by FAPA which meets the expectations of its donors and other stakeholders are underpinned by the AfDB’s values:
To ensure strong governance of its operations, FAPA has set up a Secretariat, technical committee and an oversight committee that have clearly defined areas of responsibilities as stated below:
The FAPA management team, represented by its Secretariat, oversees the successful operationalisation of FAPA’s mandate as articulated in its multidonor agreement. This team leads FAPA’s efforts to promote private sector development in Africa and ensures that the FAPA trust fund is utilised for its intended purpose and activities.
The FAPA technical committee is made up of at least 5 members of the following Bank’s Departments. TC members meet on a monthly basis to review technical assistance requests. They are expected to act with integrity and transparency, holding to the AfDB’s values and to act in the best interests of the Trust Fund at all times.
Additionally, TC members are accountable to the Oversight Committee.
The Oversight Committee consists of representatives of all three donors, namely government of Japan, AfDB and government of Austria.