By Emmanuel Elebeke
ABUJA—Nigeria may become the regional operational hub of the 43-year old Islamic Development Bank, IsDB, in Africa, as the development finance institution is considering a proposal to expand its existing country gateway office in Abuja to serve as a key regional office.
The office, which was opened by the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, earlier in the year, will coordinate the operations of the bank in its West and Central African member-countries, which constitute majority of the 27 African countries in the institution.
A statement by Director of Information in the ministry, Salisu Na’inna Dambatta, said the Abuja gateway office will serve Nigeria, Gabon, Niger, Mozambique, Barkina Faso, Cameroon, Uganda, Senegal, Djibouti and Guinea Bisaau, among others.
The move is part of a five-year package unfolded by the President of the bank, Dr. Bandar Hajjar, at the opening ceremony of the 42nd meeting in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Dr. Hajjar said that while financing infrastructure projects (energy, water, universities, ports and airports) is part of the new focus of the bank, the reform would vigorously “seek new partners and transform competitors into development partners by harnessing strength and comparative advantages of the bank.