Africa needs $170bn annually to meet infrastructure requirement – AfDB

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Dr Victor Oladokun Director Communications and Prof Vincent-Nmehielle-Scretary-General-AfDB at Annual Meeting Press Conference.

By Edith Ike- Eboh

The African Development Bank (AfDB)  says Africa needs about one hundred and seventy billion dollars annually to meet its infrastructure requirement.

Prof. Vincent Nmehielle, Secretary General of the bank disclosed this at a media briefing to announce the bank annual meeting, on Thursday in Abidjan.

“ In 2016, the bank approved 7.8bn dollars to finance investment in African continent and in 2017; it was about 6.7 billion dollars.

“ If you look at the African economic outlook that was released in January, it is very clear that for Africa infrastructure needs to be fully met, it will require about 170 billion dollars yearly.

“This will help it to meet the infrastructure gap,’’ he said

He said that the bank only approved seven billion dollars for all aspects of the high five, adding that there was the need to diversify the sources of African development through promoting the private sector.

He noted that improving the private sector operation was the only way for African to meet its development potentials.

“That is the reason why, going forward, the bank has just instituted the African Investment Forum.

“The Forum is a platform where the bank is trying to bring lots of investors to look at projects to finance across the African region, particularly private sector projects.

“We also have some government arrangement that will do PPP arrangement to leverage on the resources that the bank has for the continent,’’ he said

He said that the Forum would be launched in South Africa on the 7th to 9th of November which would attract a number of international financing organizations.

On the funding of the High five priority projects of the bank, he said that the bank had earmarked 9.99 billion dollars for the implementation of the projects.

NAN reports that the high five projects include, Light up Africa , Feed Africa, Industrialise Africa, Integrate Africa and Improve the quality of life of the people of Africa.

Commenting on the Annual Meeting, he said that the meeting would focus on review of the Bank accounts by the Board of Directors adding that some resolutions would equally be passed at the meeting.

“There will decisions on the direction of the bank and concrete decision would made on strategic projects of the bank,’’ he said (NAN)

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