An agreement between investment institutions the OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) and African Finance Corporation (AFC) is expected to help improve energy access, connectivity, transportation, trade and the logistics sector across the African continent.
The agreement will see the OPEC Fund provide the AFC with a ten-year loan amounting to $50 million to drive economic growth and job creation through infrastructure development and services modernization across Africa.
OPEC Fund Director-General Dr. Abdulhamid Alkhalifa, stated “Africa continues to be a key region for the OPEC Fund, with more than 45% of our aggregate financing dedicated to the continent,” adding that by investing in the development of sustainable infrastructure, OPEC Fund will enable Africa to maximize the exploitation of its vast resources to drive socio-economic developments.
The loan is part of efforts by the OPEC Fund to expand its footprint across Africa with the institution previously signing an initial $50 million loan partnership agreement with the AFC in January 2021. The agreement increases OPEC Fund’s funding in African power, transport, heavy industries, telecommunications and natural resources projects to over $11 billion across 36 countries.
While issues including global supply chain disruptions and rising costs for consumers post COVID-19 are disrupting the growth of African economies and increasing the continent’s infrastructure investment gap, Samaila Zubairu, CEO of the AFC said the partnership between the two institutions aims to help Africa accelerate economic progress.
He added that “Developed and developing countries alike are battling the chronic challenges brought on by a wave of global shocks, and these challenges will only be solved by working together through partnership and engagement between the world’s leading finance institutions.”