AFRICA – The African Development Bank (AfDB), has issued a US$100 million 7-year ”Feed Africa” theme bond due September 2029.
The new issuance was arranged by Citigroup Global Markets and sold in a Private Placement format to a single Japanese investor, Norinchukin Bank, a strong supporter of Agricultural, Fishery and Forestry industries.
Through this investment in the African Development Bank’s ”Feed Africa” theme bond, the investor aims to support the Bank’s initiatives and contribute to the increase in food production in Africa.
Since 2015, the African Development Bank has issued a certain number of theme bonds linked to its five strategic operational priorities known as the ”High 5s”, for the purpose of financing projects under each of the High 5 areas.
The ”Feed Africa” bond is intended to support the ”Feed Africa” High 5 and the Bank plans to direct an amount equal to the net proceeds of the issue of the notes to lending projects which aim to advance the ”Feed Africa” strategic priority, subject to and in accordance with the Bank’s lending standards.
Under its Feed Africa strategy, the Bank is working to contribute to reduce poverty; end hunger and malnutrition; make Africa a net food exporter; and move Africa to the top of export-orientated value chains where it has a comparative advantage.
Feed Africa’s overall goal is to make Africa a net food exporter by 2025.
TradeMark East Africa and CABI partner to enhance market access for regional produce
Meanwhile, regional trade facilitation organisation TradeMark East Africa has signed a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Centre for Agricultural and Bioscience International (CABI) to cement collaboration and working together for the organisations to promote and enhance market access for regional produce.
The two organisations have collaborated since 2017 to implement various Sanitary and Phyto-Sanitary Measures (SPS) projects across East Africa in, among other areas, conducting studies on SPS Gaps in the region and tools to remedy the situation.
At a time when SPS issues are significant non-tariff barriers blocking regional produce from lucrative continental and global markets, TMEA and CABI will now jointly support strengthening of national SPS systems, engagement with Regional Economic Communities and support AfCFTA implementation specifically the Protocol on Trade in Goods and Annex 7 on Sanitary and Phytosanitary measures.
Speaking during the MOU signing TMEA CEO Frank Matsaert highlighted the immense potential the region’s agricultural sector holds, if risks in food safety, plant health and animal health are addressed.
“We look forward to working together in improving the safety of agricultural goods coming from this continent to the rest of the world to enhance market access.
“We will also bring our expertise of tapping into ICT to modernize how Standards and SPS licensing and regulation is undertaken for efficiency,” said Frank.
On his part CABI Director for General Development Dr Dennis Rangi noted that the two organisations will create great synergies in SPS work which is a key catalyst to trade.
“The coming into effect of the Africa Free Continental Trade Area (AfCFTA) is creating a huge opportunity for trading in agricultural goods across the continent if standards and SPS issues are well addressed, and I believe working together we shall help exploit this opportunity,” highlighted Dennis.
Under the partnership the two organisations will support the region meet various SPS requirements (Food Safety, Animal Health, and Plant Health) in most markets hence enhancing access of regional produce.