The European Business Council for Africa

African economies fell $290bn short of the financing required to respond to the health and economic needs due to the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, according to the World Bank’s latest regional outlook.

This follows a similar warning from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) last year that the continent, unable to mobilize the kind of stimulus seen elsewhere, is facing a $345bn financing shortfall through 2023.

These pandemic induced numbers have compounded an already severe pre-covid funding gap for Africa’s various development needs.

This includes up to $108bn annually for infrastructure, as much as $331bn for small and medium sized enterprises ($65bn in the agriculture space alone), and up to $238bn for climate change adaptation between 2020 and 2030.

The EU and its member states strongly condemn the decision taken by the Government of Ethiopia on 30 September 2021 to expel seven United Nations (UN) officials from the country. The EU stands in full solidarity by the UN, and in particular OCHA, OHCHR and UNICEF directly targeted by the decision, and expresses strong support for their operations in Ethiopia, which are conducted on a neutral and impartial basis.

This decision risks further undermining the possibility to bring relief to millions of Ethiopians in a dire humanitarian situation. This comes at a moment when aid organisations are facing continuous day-to-day impediments to bring aid to people in need in Tigray and other parts of northern Ethiopia. The spill-over beyond Tigray has increased the need of protection and assistance.

The EU and its member states strongly condemn the decision taken by the Government of Ethiopia on 30 September 2021 to expel seven United Nations (UN) officials from the country. The EU stands in full solidarity by the UN, and in particular OCHA, OHCHR and UNICEF directly targeted by the decision, and expresses strong support for their operations in Ethiopia, which are conducted on a neutral and impartial basis.

This decision risks further undermining the possibility to bring relief to millions of Ethiopians in a dire humanitarian situation. This comes at a moment when aid organisations are facing continuous day-to-day impediments to bring aid to people in need in Tigray and other parts of northern Ethiopia. The spill-over beyond Tigray has increased the need of protection and assistance.

Au regard des défis à relever et des enjeux de la transformation structurelle pour une croissance inclusive au Bénin, six principaux piliers ont été identifiés comme socle du nouveau modèle de croissance et de développement du pays, relève la Note de diagnostic‑pays (NDP) de la Banque africaine de développement publié le 27 septembre dernier.

La note fixe, en premier, le développement du capital humain pour une productivité accrue. En effet, afin de créer une dynamique, impulsée par une main d’œuvre qualifiée et compétente, le document de la Banque invite le Bénin à intensifier les investissements dans l’éducation, la formation technique et professionnelle.

L’Union européenne salue le rôle de premier plan joué par la Communauté Economique des Etats d’Afrique de l’Ouest (CEDEAO) lors de la Conférence des chefs d’Etat et de gouvernement consacrée à la situation politique en République de Guinée et en République du Mali, qui s’est tenue à Accra le 16 septembre dernier.

Dans ce cadre, l’Union européenne accueille favorablement la décision de la CEDEAO d’initier le processus de réexamen du Protocole additionnel sur la démocratie et la bonne gouvernance de 2001, afin de renforcer la démocratie, la paix et la stabilité dans la région.

The German government will contribute €100 million to the African Development Bank’s Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA), affirming its commitment to efforts to tap Africa’s renewable energy potential and drive its transition to clean energy sources.

The announcement came during the United Nations High-Level Dialogue on Energy, held in New York on 24 September as part of the UN General Assembly.  

The funding will go to unlock private sector investment in green-baseload projects, a SEFA priority focus. Specifically, it will support technical assistance and investment in power generation, transmission and distribution to increase penetration of renewable power in African grids. The funding follows Germany’s initial contribution to SEFA of €50 million, made in 2020.

Norbert Barthle, Parliamentary State Secretary of the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, said during the High-Level Dialogue: “We need to accelerate the global energy transition. This requires the rapid phasing out of all fossil fuels and a massive expansion of renewable energy. The time to act is now.

Le Conseil d’administration du Fonds africain de développement a approuvé, mercredi 15 septembre à Abidjan, l’octroi d’un financement de 59,43 millions d’euros au Burkina Faso pour accroître l’accès durable à l’électricité afin d’améliorer les conditions de vie des populations.

Le financement issu du guichet concessionnel du Groupe de la Banque africaine de développement se compose d’un prêt de 41,60 millions d’euros et d’un don de 17,83 millions d’euros. D’autre part, le Fonds pour l'énergie durable en Afrique (SEFA, un fonds spécial multi-donateurs géré par la Banque africaine de développement) versera un don de 130 000 euros.

The African Development Bank Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, Beth Dunford, led a mission to Cote d’Ivoire’s capital Yamoussoukro, on 16 September to assess progress on a Bank-supported agro-industrial cluster in Bélier.

The mission, that included Marie-Laure Akin Olugbade, Director General for West Africa and Bank Directors for Agriculture and Agroindustry as well as for Agricultural Finance and Rural Development, Martin Fregene and Atsuko Toda, respectively, was received by Adjoumani Kobenan, Côte d'Ivoire’s Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development. Also present were Kaba Nialé, who serves as Minister of Planning and Development and as an African Development Bank Governor for Côte d'Ivoire, as well as Augustin Thiam, political governor of Yamoussoukro District.

The Board of Directors of the African Development Fund on Wednesday approved a loan of around $116 million to the Tanzanian government to upgrade a 160-km Mnivata-Newala-Masasi road corridor in the southern part of the country.

The Bank’s loan represents 98.71% of the project cost; the government of Tanzania will provide the remaining 1.29% in funding.

The project will upgrade the roadway, including the 84-meter Mwiti bridge, to bituminous standard. The works also have social components, including the provision of potable water, education and medical infrastructure, the establishment of cashew nut processing units, and extension of entrepreneurial training to women and youth.

The European Union condemns the execution on 18 September of nine persons, possibly including a minor, by Ansar Allah in Sana’a. There are also reports of irregularities in the judicial process, and allegations of mistreatment.

The European Union strongly opposes the death penalty at all times and in all circumstances. It is a cruel and inhumane punishment, which fails to act as a deterrent to crime and represents an unacceptable denial of human dignity and integrity.