Zambia has become the first Southern African member country of the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), a leading development finance institution for infrastructure in Africa.
The accession of Zambia to AFC membership marks a significant milestone in the corporations mission to address Africas infrastructure needs and build the foundation for robust economic development across the continent.
To date the Corporation has invested US$4.5 billion in projects across 28 African countries and in a wide range of sectors including power, telecommunications, transport and logistics, natural resources, and heavy industries.
A statement yesterday explained that Zambia’s membership accession supports the AFCs membership expansion strategy and the continued alignment of its country membership with its operational footprint.
Zambia, which signed its letter of adherence on 11 October, 2017 became the 16th member country of AFC.
AFCs other members are: Cape Verde, Chad, CÃ´te dIvoire, Djibouti, Gabon, the Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea-Conakry, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Uganda, and Sierra- Leone.
Commenting on the development, the CEO of AFC, Andrew Alli said: “We are excited to welcome Zambia as the first Southern African member country of AFC. We believe that investment in, and sustainable delivery of infrastructure in land-linked Zambia, will accelerate intraregional trade and lead to stronger economic development and growth in Southern Africa in particular and Africa in general.
“This goal can only be achieved if adequate transport, power, telecommunications, and industrial infrastructure are available and are functional. This is where AFC steps in, and we are excited by the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”
AFC already has a large presence in Zambia. To date, the corporation had invested over US$150 million in various projects in the power and downstream oil sectors.
The corporation had also provided trade finance to the country’s Ministry of Finance for the importation of co-mingled oil products for refining into refined petroleum products.
Speaking on the announcement, the country’s Minister of Finance, Felix Mutati, noted that over the years, AFC has shown its strong commitment towards infrastructure and economic development in Zambia.
“Today, we are happy to formally accept the invitation to join the membership of AFC. We look forward to greater engagement with the Corporation and their continued support in the delivery of sign,” he added.