By Babajide Komolafe
THE European Investment Bank has signed a new fifteen year EUR 200 million loan agreement with the African Export-Import Bank, Afreximbank, aimed at supporting trade-related productive investments, including renewable energy projects, in Africa. The facility will support promoters in more than 40 countries across Africa with long-term funding.
In a statement announcing the deal, Afreximbank, said, “By improving access to finance for private enterprises, and specifically SMEs and Mid-caps, this loan will enhance Intra-African trade as well as trade with the European Union. It will enable smaller companies to sustain and create new jobs and will ultimately stimulate the expansion, diversification and development of African trade.
“At least 25 percent of this financing will be dedicated to projects which will help to diversify the power mix in the region, reducing reliance on fossil fuels and supporting climate goals.
Speaking from the Africa Day event in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, jointly hosted by the EIB and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, UNIDO, Werner Hoyer, President of the European Investment Bank said: “The EIB, as the EU Bank, is committed to supporting investment in Africa that unlocks economic opportunities, creates jobs and tackles a changing climate. As one of the largest multilateral financial institutions, the EIB has a crucial role to play to help channel private capital towards the energy transition”.
Also speaking, Prof. Benedict Okey Oramah, President of Afreximbank, said: “We are confident that effective implementation of this facility, which heralds Afreximbank’s financing of climate action projects in Africa, will lead to strong development outcomes, including employment creation, increased economic activities, and increase in tax revenues for fiscally strained governments”.