On 10 October, GI Hub’s policy advisor Cleyton Barros and Senior Manager Mujde Zeynel, took part in the 2 day Infrastructure Africa Business Forum that brought together business to develop and form partnerships and plan a way forward to address Africa’s infrastructure needs. The 7th annual Infrastructure Africa Business Forum presented stakeholders with an opportunity to unpack the enormous growth potential in addressing Africa’s infrastructure needs. Africa, with a population exceeding 1 billion people is well placed as an emerging market, keen for investment and growth.
Cleyton Barros took part in the panel on Improving project bankability as a key to bridging Africa's infrastructure gap. The panel bought together the PWC Advisory, White and Case, Clinton Foundation, Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa and the Global infrastructure Hub and facilitated an open discussion on how preparing a pipeline of bankable sustainable infrastructure projects is vital to closing the infrastructure gap and creating jobs on the continent. The participants emphasised the need for strong coordination in the preparation of bankable, investment-ready projects that can attract financing for implementation.
With half of the intended projects still at a conceptual stage, Africa needs to incrementally increase the capacity for project preparation in terms of resources and skills in order to facilitate employment opportunities for Africa’s youth. For private investors to come on board, governments will need to create the right legislative, regulatory and institutional environment. To augment this initiative a clear and transparent regulatory framework is the foundation for a conducive business environment.
Mujde Zeynel participated at the panel ‘The role of DFIs in developing Africa's infrastructure‘ that brought together representatives from IMF, KFW DEG, Power Africa, GIZ, Manokore Attorneys and the Global Infrastructure Hub. The importance of quality infrastructure development as a powerful driver of economic growth was highlighted. A key mechanism for closing the infrastructure gap in Africa is to crowd-in the growing pools of capital available for private investment in infrastructure by shifting MDBs and DFIs emphasis to capital facilitation.