Africa Investment Forum holds the key for investment buoyancy

The African Development Bank Group is championing the maiden annual Africa Investment Forum (AIF) 2018, which is a multi-stakeholder and disciplinary collaborative platform for the economic and social development of the continent.

From the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa, between November 7-9, project sponsors, borrowers, lenders and investors will congregate to accelerate Africa’s investment opportunities.

The AIF is a totally transactional platform dedicated to advancing projects to bankable stages, raising capital and accelerating the financial closure of deals.

Processes will be harmonized, origination will be centralized, intermediation costs reduced and quality of project information and documentation improved in order to increase action-oriented engagement between African governments and the private sector, according to the forum literature, copied to the Ghana News Agency.

AIF is a joint effort of major development finance institutions, projects sponsors and other investors integrated in accelerating Africa’s prosperity.

Each will use tools at their disposal to de-risk investments at scale and follow through on transactional.

AfDB through AIF and its partners will accelerate private sector investments in Africa through a combination of project preparedness, pipeline development, policy environment, project bankability and investment promotion.

AIF is expected to host concrete and focused investment opportunity sessions through boardroom discussions, bi-lateral meetings and workshops, leveraging on global investors and policy-makers.

President of AFDB Group, Dr Akinwumi Adesina said “I do not seek aid, I seek investment for Africa. We have to look at Africa from an investment lens.”

He described the AIF as a unique way of sealing investment deals: “I know you have gone to several forums, but this is different. It is not a talking forum, but a 100 percent transactional platform that we have set up to leverage global pensions funds, sovereign wealth funds and other institutional investors to invest in Africa-in pharmaceuticals, in agriculture, in infrastructure, power, you name it.”

“The Bank is working to ensure that the AIF becomes Africa’s springboard for investment and for meeting the continent’s infrastructure and development needs, says Dr Adesina.

Mr Yofi Grant, CEO of Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) said the investment marketplace forum will provide a continental platform to showcase major infrastructural readiness of Africa and Ghana in particular, pooling the collective efforts of development institutions to augment project pipelines and its visibility.

He said the country expects to leverage some US$3.2 Billion of investment from the meeting while advocating for institutional reforms and improving regulatory policies.

He commended AfDB for this phenomenal multi-stakeholder and disciplinary initiative that is intended to lay the architectural framework for investment and doing business in Africa.

Although brimming with investment opportunities, there is an urgent need to bridge the gap between Africa’s available capital and bankable projects. Financing Africa’s development needs will require an estimated US$600-700 Billion per annum. Of these, about US$130-170 Billion a year is needed for infrastructure according to AfDB’s African Economic Outlook 2018.

AIF will catalyse investments into AfDB’s High Five strategy; Light and Power Africa, Feed Africa, Industrialise Africa, Integrate Africa and improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.

Source: GNA