The Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), a leading pan-African multilateral development finance institution and project developer, has this week signed a MoU with Moroccan bank Banque Centrale Populaire (BCP) to increase collaboration on financing vital infrastructure projects in North and Sub-Saharan Africa.
A delegation from BCP, headed by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mr. Mohamed Benchaaboun, visited Nigeria for the signing of the agreement on Thursday at the AFC offices.
AFC proactively finances and develops much-needed infrastructure projects across the continent, including in North Africa. In 2012 the corporation financed the purchase of crude oil for refining into petroleum products by SAMIR, at that time the national refinery of Morocco, in an effort to develop the country’s downstream industry. To date the Corporation has invested over US$4 billion in projects across 26 African countries and in a wide range of sectors including power, telecommunications, transport and logistics, natural resources, and heavy industries.
Andrew Alli, CEO of AFC, said: “Africa’s huge infrastructure investment gap is estimated to be approximately US$90 billion every year for the next decade. While the need for financing is acute, strong returns for investors exist in African infrastructure.
“Partnerships such as these open up Africa’s infrastructure opportunity to more international investors and the sharing of expertise will contribute to devising innovative financing solutions for the infrastructure projects that will drive Africa’s economic growth in the future.”
Mr. Mohamed Benchaaboun of BCP also commented: “We are delighted to be signing this agreement in Lagos today. We hope to work very closely with AFC in the future to identify potential financing targets and to collaborate on opportunities for trade finance risk sharing, particularly important when it comes to infrastructure projects. Our joint aim is for this to be a partnership that benefits not only Morocco but countries across the continent.”
AFC, along with various development partners, recently launched the Africa Infrastructure Development Association to be the voice of the private sector project developer community. The initiative recognises the importance of mutual collaboration to bring about successful financing and project development solutions for infrastructure projects across the continent.
BCP is a Morocco-based bank engaged in the provision of financial products and services. Its portfolio includes accounts, cards, credit facilities, insurance and investment management. Its products are targeted at individuals, professionals and businesses.
AFC, an international investment grade multilateral finance institution, was established in 2007 with an equity capital base of US$1 billion, to be the catalyst for private sector infrastructure investment across Africa. With a current balance sheet size of approximately US$3.2 billion, AFC is now the second highest investment grade rated multilateral financial institution in Africa with an A3/P2 (Stable outlook) rating from Moody’s Investors Service. In May 2015, AFC successfully concluded a debut US$750 million Eurobond issue which was 7 times oversubscribed and attracted investors from Asia, Europe and the USA.
AFC’s investment approach combines specialist industry expertise with a focus on financial and technical advisory, project structuring, project development and risk capital to address Africa’s infrastructure development needs and drive sustainable economic growth.
AFC invests in high quality infrastructure assets that provide essential services in the core infrastructure sectors of power, natural resources, heavy industry, transport, and telecommunications.