From CLEMENT NWOJI, Abuja
Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has canvassed for Recapitalisation of African Development Bank (AfDB) to enable it provide financial support and fulfill other commitments to member-countries.
Adeosun spoke at the Regional Consultative Meeting between the AfDB President, Mr. Akinwumi Adesina and the Bank’s Governors and Ministers of Finance from West Africa and Central Africa held recently in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.
The meeting was the first consultations of its kind since the creation of the Bank in 1963.
She noted that the AfDB provided assistance to Nigeria during the recession era, saying “At the height of the crisis that shook our economy due to the fall in oil prices, the AfDB provided us with substantial budget support, while other partners were very reluctant.”
Adeosun maintained that a solid AfDB was required to assist the African countries to mobilise their internal resources.
Adesina told the Bank Governors that the annual meetings had hitherto been the only setting for group dialogue between the Governors and the Management of the Bank.
“We intend for this type of consultation to be an annual event that provides another opportunity to listen to you, to seek your advice and discuss important developments and matters important to the work of the Bank and Africa’s development.”
At the meeting, the Governors and the AfDB Senior Management agreed to accelerate the implementation of the Bank’s five strategic priorities which include: light up and power Africa, feed Africa, industrialise Africa, integrate Africa, and improve the quality of life for the people of Africa
They also called for an increase in capital mobilisation to allow the Bank to meet its mandates for Africa, in view of considerable reductions in official development assistance.
The AfDB Governors recalled that the sixth capital increase, ratified in 2010, made it possible for the Bank to take the volume of loans to unprecedented levels.
They added that aid to countries receiving African Development Fund financing had increased seventeen-fold.
Meanwhile, the AfDB Treasurer and Acting Vice-President, Finance, Hassatou Diop N’Sele, has assured that the Bank was financially strong.
“We know that our continent needs substantial resources to meet its development goals. Without Africa, the sustainable development goals will not be achieved globally,” N’Sele said.