Akinwumi Adesina: Africa faces $108bn infrastructure financing gap annually
President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Akinwumi Adesina has stated that Africa faces an infrastructure financing gap of $68 billion to $108 billion annually.
Adesina said the situation has persisted despite collective efforts to bridge the gap.
According to a statement posted on the AfDB’s website, Adesina said this when Janet Yellen, US treasury secretary, hosted G-7 ministers and heads of multilateral development banks on Tuesday.
Speaking at the virtual roundtable, Adesina said AfDB had committed more than $44 billion to infrastructure across the continent in the last six years.
According to him, the money was channelled toward developing critical areas like transportation, energy, water, and sanitation.
Proposing solutions to bridge Africa’s infrastructure finance gap, the AfDB president said efforts should be made towards mobilising institutional investors and improving public financing for infrastructure.
Others include attracting the private sector, mobilising financing for green infrastructure, dealing with risks and stretching the balance sheet of multilateral development banks.
Adesina also said that project preparation facilities were critical to developing bankable infrastructure projects.
He added that one of the major challenges in infrastructure projects was moving commercially viable projects to financial close.
He added that more should be achieved by focusing on local currency financing for infrastructure.
This, he said, could help with debt sustainability, as the bulk of Africa’s debt today was due to infrastructure financing.
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