The African Development Bank (AfDB) has promised to help Nigeria bridge its infrastructure investment deficit. Nigeria’s infrastructure deficit is put at an estimated figure of $3 trillion in the next 26 years or about 100 billion dollars annually. The Bank’s Senior Director to Nigeria, Mr Ebrima Faal, said the obvious – the government does not have enough funds to provide the needed infrastructure for sustainable development. “Indeed, over the last decade, and despite impressive growth rates in most of the continent, Africa’s infrastructure needs remain formidable with annual financing gap between 130 and 107 billion dollars annually,” Faal said yesterday at the Africa Investment Forum (AIF) Roadshow in Abuja.
“There is therefore a critical need to change the current funding mix and create partnerships to finance infrastructure and other projects in Africa,” he stated. He announced that the AfDB has plans to assist Nigeria in putting together a pipeline of bankable projects ahead of the Africa Investment Forum, coming up in November 7 to 9 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
“The African Development Bank is committed to the development of effective public private partnerships and has been developing new innovative financing programs, instruments and partnership. This is to facilitate the financing and construction of critical infrastructure in the continent,” he said.
He added that as a matter of fact, the bank working with multilateral institutions and the private sector, will help Nigeria to develop investment-ready projects for investors, fund managers and others, who will be present at the forum in South Africa.“The AIF is an investment market place that aims to showcase key projects currently under development and assess how those projects will be financed, operated and delivered successfully to maximise efficiency and project success,” Faal stated. On her part, the bank’s director in charge of African Investment Forum, Ms Stella Kilonzo said the bank aims to de-risk investments in Africa. She said the bank seeks to fast track the Sustainable Development Goals through the development of bankable projects in the agricultural, energy and infrastructure sector among others.
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