AMH is an independent media house free from political ties or outside influence. We have four newspapers: The Zimbabwe Independent, a business weekly published every Friday, The Standard, a weekly published every Sunday, and Southern and NewsDay, our daily newspapers. Each has an online edition.

Afreximbank raises US$38bn through central bank deposit programme

The programme, launched in 2014, aims to mobilise a portion of African central banks’ reserves to support intra-African trade and economic development, promoting economic growth and integration across the continent.

AFREXIMBANK, a pan-African multilateral financial institution, has raised US$38 billion in funding since 2014 through its central bank deposit programme, according to vice-president Denys Denya.

The programme, launched in 2014, aims to mobilise a portion of African central banks’ reserves to support intra-African trade and economic development, promoting economic growth and integration across the continent.

“We need African solutions to Africa's problems. We raise funding from the continent,” Denya said in a plenary session during the Afreximbank’s 31st Annual Meetings and 3rd Afri-Caribbean Trade and Investment Forum in Nassau, The Bahamas on Wednesday.

“In terms of funding, in 2014 the Afreximbank launched the central bank deposit programme. Since then (2014), cumulatively, we have raised US$38 billion.”

In his welcome remarks at the opening ceremony, Denya noted that despite the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade in 1807/1808, Africa remains a periphery player in the world’s economic and finance spheres.

In an increasingly deglobalised world characterised by friend-shoring and nearshoring, with the key actors aiming at economic and political dominance, Denya said the need for a united Africa in the context of global Africa was not only logical but indeed urgent.

“I would like to remind us of the hope of our forefathers — who fought and lost their lives in the quest for emancipation from the clutches of colonialism and neo-colonialism,” he noted.

“It has been a long and bumpy journey characterised by uncertainty of enormous proportions.”

He said even though there has been some progress, mostly politically, a lot more needs to be done economically towards the achievement of a common purpose and shared vision.

“The global economy today is sadly characterised by intensification of nationalism and a shift from the rules-based multilateral trading system,” he said.

“De-globalisation and related policy choices of the global north geared towards retaining global leadership have fractured the global trading system.

“Heightening geopolitical tensions and associated geo-economic shifts, the rise in neo-protectionism underpinned by trade and technology wars as countries jostle for economic dominance has put a severe dent on multilateralism.

“Unfortunately, these recurring global shocks continue to undermine the development aspirations of most developing nations, while at the same time the impact of climate change and extreme weather conditions are threatening to erode any economic gains achieved by developing nations.”

The recurring global shocks and associated liquidity constraints have left most developing economies at the mercy of creditors whose terms of lending appear designed to ensure that they continue the cycle of borrowing with dire implications for macroeconomic management and socio-economic development, Denya noted.

“We must, however, admit that the story of the continent’s development or lack thereof is puzzling in the context of its natural resource endowment,” he said.

“For example, it is home to over 30% of the world’s mineral reserves and over 13% of the world’s oil, with some of the countries on the continent controlling a significant proportion of critical minerals which are used in strategic processes, including cobalt used in battery production and tantalum used in manufacturing capacitors for mobile phones, laptops and automotive electronics.”

Africa also controls 20% and over 60% of the global production of other minerals including platinum, natural diamond, chromite, manganese, phosphate rock, gold, uranium, while at the same time accounting for over 60% of the world's uncultivated arable land.

“Regrettably, for a continent that is endowed with such an abundance of natural resources, the quest for sustainable development has been a perennial struggle,” the Afreximbank vice-president bemoaned.

“The state of development across the Caribbean, while not identical is not quite different from this narrative. It is in this context of sustained deprivation and marginalisation that we seek to unify our forces in the context of global Africa for a better future.

“In our unity, we have the numbers, a voice and strength to be at the table of decision-making. Our combined imagination and resources should create a viable force with a competitive edge.”

Denya said trade among African countries remained exceptionally low compared to intra-regional trade in other regions.

“Strengthening trade and investment flows among ourselves is a crucial step towards wealth creation,” he said.

“Also deepening trade and investment flows will promote enhanced interconnectivity, while contributing to our capacity to withstand global shocks.

“In a region where there is a deficit of capacity, any meaningful trade agreement with other regions should logically begin with addressing the capacity challenge with a view to levelling the playing field and ensuring fair competition. We should and must seek equitable partnerships.”

He said it was time to change the narrative, noting that the task is enormous, but more so is “our courage”.

“In our collective ambition and aspirations bound by a unified conviction, we shall carry the mantle from our forefathers to make that dream of Global Africa a reality. We must unite and change the course of our destiny and our economic fortunes.”

He added that “we have come to the point where we cannot afford to rely on the generosity or pity of others or continue to wait for non-maturing promissory notes in the form of aid and grants.”

Afreximbank played a leading and enabling role in nearly all the landmark deals across Africa during the COVID-19 pandemic era, mobilising capital from various investors.

The three-day meetings are running under the theme: Owning our destiny: Economic prosperity on the platform of global Africa.

Related Topics