By Bamidele Famoofo
The African Development Bank, under the leadership of Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, has increased disbursements to support the structural transformation of countries in Africa, according to its Annual Report, released during the Annual Meetings in Busan, South Korea.
The bankâ€™s disbursements reached $7.81 billion in 2017, a 15 percent increase over 2016 and the highest on record for the bank. This increase was driven, to a large extent, by the 42 percent increase in project loan and grant disbursements, which reflect in part, improved portfolio management.
AfDB President Addison said that this â€œreflected a 56 percent increase in disbursements for non-sovereign operations. A clear sign of the Bank Groupâ€™s increasing engagement with Africaâ€™s private sector, non-sovereign operations accounted for 38 percent of African Development Bank approvals, the highest on record.â€
While the bankâ€™s net operating income declined between 2014 and 2015, it has turned around rapidly.
â€œThe Bank Group also continued to grow its income. Net operating income increased in 2017 to US $817.69 million, up from US $631.08 million in 2016, a 29.6% increase and the highest since 2009,â€ Adesina said, adding that, â€œthe Bank also consolidated its position as Africaâ€™s leading knowledge institution by taking full leadership responsibility for the publication of a key flagship â€“ the African Economic Outlook.â€
The bank approved 249 operations amounting to $8.93 billion. This was reflected in its core financing, disbursements, operational strategies and portfolio management.
The bank is stepping up the pace by focusing on five priorities that are crucial for accelerating Africaâ€™s economic transformation. The â€œHigh 5s(link is external)â€ include Light up and power Africa, Feed Africa, Industrialise Africa, Integrate Africa, and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.
These High 5s guide the bankâ€™s operations to deliver critical development impacts in Africa. For example, once completed, power generation projects approved in 2017 will install 1,400 MW of new renewable energy capacity. Light up and power Africa provided 4.4 million people with electricity. Feed Africa provided 8.5 million people with improved agricultural technologies.