African Development Bank (AfDB) President. Akinwumi Adesina, on Wednesday urged Canadian business leaders to “be part of the action and seize investment opportunities on the continent.” Adesina made the call while meeting with 80 leading representatives of the Canada-Africa Chamber of Commerce in Toronto.
Promoting the Bank’s upcoming Africa Investment Forum (AIF), scheduled for 7-9 November 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa, Adesina said, “Canada must not be missing at Africa’s investment table. It is time to change the lens through which Africa is perceived and to make clear distinctions between perceived and real risks.”
AIF will bring together global private capital and investment funds, sovereign wealth funds and the private sector, for what is primarily being billed as a transactional marketplace to bridge Africa’s $68 – $170 billion infrastructure gap.
Stella Kilonzo, Senior Director of the Africa Investment Forum; Timothy Turner, African Development Bank Group Chief Risk Officer; Garreth Bloor, Managing Director, Glenheim Venture Capital; Chris Clubb, Managing Director, Convergence Blended Finance; Hakan Gunay, Senior Director of Finance, Skypower Global, were among panelists discussing investment and blended finance options in Africa at the event.
Addressing participants, Bank Executive Director, David Stevenson explained that the Forum was “about deals and getting things done and not a talk shop.”
Adesina, who is leading a high-level delegation alongside Stevenson, Executive Director for Canada, China, South Korea, Kuwait and Turkey, also met with Reeta Roy, President/CEO of the MasterCard Foundation, to discuss synergies for supporting youth employment and access to finance for women entrepreneurs in Africa.
Earlier in Ottawa on Tuesday, Adesina announced a $1 billion synthetic securitization transaction at Canada’s National Press Theater.
Although securitization is routine for commercial banks, it is cutting-edge for development finance institutions. The African Development Bank is the first Multi-Lateral Development Bank (MDB) to use this game-changing innovative financing mechanism. Room2Run, structured as an impact investment, will enable the Bank to increase its lending to spur economic development and social progress across the continent.
“Africa has the most promise, the greatest natural resources, and the world’s youngest population. But we also have the world’s most persistent infrastructure deficits. The African Development Bank has the strategy to address these infrastructure finance gaps—and Room2Run gives us the capacity to make it happen,” Adesina said.
The landmark transaction was concluded with the Mariner Investment Group and Africa50.
At Global Affairs Canada (GAC), Adesina exchanged views with Diane Jacovella, Deputy Minister of International Development and Leslie E. Norton, Assistant Deputy Minister, Sub-Saharan Africa Branch at Global Affairs. The two parties explored areas for further partnership between the Bank and Canada, including support for the Bank’s Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) initiative.
In a keynote address at the Global Affairs Canada in Ottawa on Africa’s economic situation, President, Adesina said, “Some ask the question whether the Africa rising story is over. Well I don’t think Africa was ever down.”
Adesina told partners and employees of Global Affairs, “The continent is not different from other parts of the world that pass through episodes of growth spurts and dips. The narrative on Africa should not be determined outside of Africa. Africa must control its own narrative,” he noted. The event was hosted by David Morisson, Canada’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Later, meeting with African ambassadors, the Bank President commended Canada’s leadership role in helping advance Africa’s economic agenda. He acknowledged the ambassadors’ collective commitment and support in promoting Africa as an investment destination of choice.
Adesina wrapped up the Ottawa stop with a bilateral meeting with Jim Carr, Canada’s Minister of Internal Trade Diversification, where he again made the case for increased investment on the continent and urged Canada to look to Africa as a new trade destination in line with its diversification agenda.
NIGERIA: Governors Arrive Abuja For NGF Meeting
Governors from different parts of the country have arrived at the Nigeria Governors’ Forum secretariat in Abuja for a meeting.
During the meeting, as reliably gathered, the governors are expected to discuss the agenda for the next Federal Executive Council meeting and Local Government Funding, among other issues.
In attendance is the chairman of the forum and the Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, his deputy and Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal.
Others are Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom; Anambra State Governor Willie Obiano; Jigawa State Governor Abubakar Badaru; Akwa Ibom Udom Emmanuel; Delta State Ifeanyi Okowa; Adamawa Umaru Fintiri
Makinde lauds IUFMP initiative , promises to end flooding in Oyo
Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo state has expressed the readiness of his government to take proactive measures that would help put an end to flooding in the State.
Governor Makinde, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Olubamiwo Adeosun, made the pledge at the closing ceremony of the workshop on Ibadan flood forecast, early warning and implementation support programme held in the state capital, on Wednesday.
The Governor assured that his government would readily support the implementation of the Ibadan Urban Flood Management and other ongoing intervention projects in the state.
Contained in a statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, the Governor, commended the IUFMP on the flood forecast initiative, which he said: “will furnish our people with prior alerts about impending flood disasters”.
He stressed that it was that a scientific initiative that would alert the people of the possibility of a looming flood disaster was being launched.
Governor Makinde, also described the Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project (lUFMP) as a people-oriented project set up to change the narrative of incessant and ravaging flood disasters, adding that the project was in consonance with his campaign promises.
The statement added that the Governor had at earlier meetings with the IUFMP team given assurances that Government would take necessary steps to protect the people while charging that the stakeholders on the project to ensure that all hands were on deck to achieve the effective implementation of the initiative.
“Beyond building bridges, culverts, drain lines, and access roads which are on their own crucial towards ensuring the good life, we as a government also have a duty to give full support to the implementation of the IUFMP initiative that will furnish our people with prior alerts about impending flood disasters.
“This will enable our people to take proactive steps for the preservation of lives and properties. This is a step in the right direction and it will continue to enjoy maximum support of the State Government.
“It is pertinent that we are able to x-ray the factors that can ultimately protect our people from vulnerability to flooding, through adequate knowledge building and information flow on impending flooding and looming dangers. Such information, readily disseminated well ahead of time will save lives.
“I have been told that this workshop, which started yesterday is a two-day programme aimed at sensitising State officials, key stakeholder-agencies and representatives of communities situated along with flood-prone areas, while also informing high-level office-holders about the project,” the Governor said.
Governor Makinde further stated that the State would be expecting value for its investment in the project, which he noted should be in terms of “immediate gains in the area of safety of lives and properties, as well as measurable capacity building for our homegrown technocrats and public servants who would be required to sustain the initiative, post-IUFMP.”
Governor Makinde, however called on the operators of the project to ensure that the advantages of the project were transferred to other communities in the state through a form of knowledge transfer.
“As I have assured officials of the IUFMP before now, our government will continue to provide enabling environment for the success of other intervention works being carried out at different locations/communities within Ibadan. We expect that all such projects are delivered on schedule to enable our people reap the benefits,” the Governor submitted.
Terrorists Kill Five Soldiers In Mali
No fewer than five troops were killed in central Mali on Wednesday when their convoy was ambushed by jihadists, the armed forces confirmed.
The army on its Twitter feed said that the attack occurred on a road between the villages of Boni and Hombori.
“FAMA (the Malian armed forces) suffered five dead. Equipment was also destroyed,” it said.
A local official said gunfire was heard and another said “the jihadists… burned at least two military vehicles. At least two soldiers were also wounded.”
Northern Mali fell into the hands of jihadists in 2012 before the rebels were forced out by a French-led military intervention.
However, much of the region remains chronically unstable and since 2015 violence has spread to the centre of the country.
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