The hosting of the 29th session of the Executive Committee of the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (http://www.UCLGA.org) at Ciala Resorts in Kisumu, Kenya, offered the opportunity to organize a workshop on June 2nd, 2023 for the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) to address the leaders of Subnational and local governments of Africa.
The workshop was organized at the initiative of Kisumu County Government in partnership with UCLG Africa and Afreximbank. Were in attendance leaders of subnational and local governments, including the governors and deputy governors of the Lake Region Economic Bloc, the members of the UCLG Africa Executive Committee and Secretariat, and the officials and officers of Kisumu County government.
The Governor of Kisumu, Prof. Peter Anyang’ Nyongo’o highlighted the importance of the creation of this initiative. “We appreciated the possibility of the Afreximbank coming on board to support subnational governments. The leadership of UCLG Africa have for long time battled on this, and hence set up the the Africa Territorial Trade and Investment Agency (ATIA). This contributes to this opportunity today that we welcome to this platform Afreximbank. Together we believe Africa will be develop”, he said.
“Every development is local. It means that, if you want to grow, you start locally. We created ATIA, because we wanted that Subnational Local Governments of Africa participated in the realization of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). UCLG Africa signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Afeximbank to improve the level of investments at the sub-sovereign level of governance have investments brought by the bank or to convince people with investments to get in to our Subnational Local Governments Network. So that this become a changing agents for the development of this continent”, said Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, Secretary General of UCLG Africa.
Notice that the MoU signed between Afreximbank and UCLG Africa, contains a detailed Implementation Plan that will ensure the ideals of the collaboration to improve the governance and economic conditions of Sub-Sovereign Governments are achieved and that a Data Management System is developed to boost economic development in African Regions.
Dr. Gainmore Zanamwe, Acting Director, Intra-African Trade Bank, made a presentation of key Afreximbank financing products of interest for Sub-Sovereign Governments. “We want to work with you to help you to build your development projects. And for those who have already launched their projects, we can support you to find investors. Because we do believe that, business is actually done at the subnational level”, he explained.
Mr. Zanamwe presented a series of instruments and products developed by Afreximbank to assist sub-sovereign governments in identifying business and trade opportunities and supporting the design of a portfolio of bankable projects that would participate in changing the sustainable development trajectory of sub sovereign governments in Africa.
Among these instruments and products Mr. Zanamwe highlighted the following:
–Afreximbank Project Preparation Facility (APPF) : A key instrument through which the Bank supports the development of projects from conceptualization to a stage of their bankability in order to attract the attention of investors;
–African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Adjustment Fund: The Fund supports African countries and the private sector to effectively participate in the new trading environment established under the AfCFTA.
–Transit Guarantee Scheme: That facilitates the movement of goods within the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) or throughout the continent using a single technology that enables continental bonds to promote intra-African trade under the AfCFTA
–Industrial Parks and Special Economic Zones, to facilitate the emergence and expansion of Industrial Parks (IPs) and Export Processing Zones (EPZs), focusing on light manufacturing and agro-processing.
–Export Trading Companies: address institutional market failure by providing market intelligence, aggregating products, finding markets and assisting manufacturers, SMEs and informal cross-border traders to participate in international trade.
–The Africa Trade Gateway : Internet Platform dedicated to African International Trade at Africa.
-Intra-African Investment Finance: focus on financing promotion of Foreign Direct Investment or African Direct Investment. It supports setting up and/or expansion of businesses by an entity from one African country in another African country
–Intra-African Investment Guarantee : which purpose is to protect investors against risk events that may impair their investment rights or earnings
–Contracting Related Guarantees: To reissue a wide range of specialized guarantees (i.e. bid bonds, performance bonds, advance payment guarantees and retention bonds) issued by FIs to African construction/contracting companies to conduct construction services in other African countries.
Participants expressed interest to receive support for Afreximbank to write banckable projects and to be get access to investors. During the very lively debate that followed Afreximbank’s presentation, Mr. George Mwanza, Mayor of Chapati City (Zambia) and vice-President of the Network of African Young Elected Local Officials (YELO), advocated for a « strong involvement of Youth and Women in the financings of projects, but only through UCLG Africa, as delivery and implementing partner of Afreximbank ».
After having commented and responded to questions raised during the debate, M. Zanamwe extended an invitation to the workshop attendees to participate in the Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF 2023), to be held in Cairo, Egypt from 9 to 15 November 2023.
After the historic success of Africities 9, held in Kisumu, in May 2022, summit that welcomed 13 000 participants, a new milestone will be the organization of the Kisumu Investment Forum to be held in October 2023 as the result of the ongoing study on Local Economic Development of the Kisumu County co-organized by the Kisumu County government, Afreximbank, and UCLG Africa.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa).
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