In this special round-up episode, we speak to three prominent attendees of the 2022 African Development Bank Annual Meetings. The theme, “Achieving Climate Resilience and a Just Energy Transition for Africa”, features throughout as our guests talk us through their hopes, fears and aspirations for development on the continent.
Attracting more finance to Africa
Omar Ben Yedder, group publisher and managing director at IC Publications, kicks off with his take on the Annual Meetings. He relays the challenges of attracting more development finance to the continent amidst myriad economic and financial pressures, gives us his highlights from the African Banker Awards and reflects on the upbeat, defiant tone of this year’s meetings (listen to minutes 2:12-14:48 of the podcast).
Closing Africa’s infrastructure gap
Solomon Quaynor, African Development Bank vice president for private sector, infrastructure and industrialisation, highlights Africa’s huge infrastructure gap, laying out a strategic vision for a series of linked, transcontinental projects to help compress value chains and drive industrialisation.
He also speaks about the so-called “African risk premium“, claiming that the maturation of the continent’s financial architecture alongside the strong performance of existing investments may mean this premium is finally eroding (listen to minutes 14:48-41:02 of the podcast).
Combating climate change and forging a new economic course for Africa
Professor Kevin Urama, the Bank’s acting chief economist, rounds out the episode with a wide-ranging overview of economic and environmental developments on the continent. He is frank about the existence of a “triangle of disaster”, but is positive that Africa’s financial institutions and mechanisms, as well as its robust productive base, make it more economically resilient than many suppose.
He speaks passionately and urgently about the threat of climate change, and outlines a framework for the decoupling of economic progress from environmental degradation. He concludes with a challenge – for Africa to chart its own economic course (listen to minutes 41:03-1:25:04 of the podcast).
- Dr Hippolyte Fofack on IMF Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)
- Kevin Kariuki on the impact of Covid-19 and the climate crisis on Africa’s energy transition
- Africa’s infrastructure paradox
- The African ‘perception premium’
- The 2022 African Economic Outlook
- Our World in Data: Decoupling emissions and economic growth
Host: Angus Chapman
Executive producer: Dr Desné Masie
Co-producer: Peter Doerrie
Researcher: Angus Chapman
Digital Editor: Charles Dietz
Design: Jason Venkatasamy