AfDB Group, JICA ink $350m deal

The African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) have signed a JPY 44.1 billion ($350 million) loan to fund private sector operations in Africa. The loan is part of Japan’s Official Development Assistance to Africa and comes under the Enhanced Private Sector Assistance initiative. The fifth version of the initiative, which is worth $4 billion, was signed last August at the Eighth Tokyo International Conference on African Development.

The loan agreement was signed at JICA’s headquarters in Tokyo by Dr Tanaka Akihiko, JICA President, and Dr Akinwumi Adesina, President of the AfDB Group. Dr Adesina is visiting Japan to discuss investment opportunities with government officials, large Japanese companies, development partners, parliamentarians, and the African diplomatic corps. Dr Tanaka said the private sector in Africa is essential to create jobs for the continent’s prosperity and progress.

Dr Adesina thanked the Japanese government and JICA for their support and invited JICA to work with the AfDB Group on other critical areas such as refining the food and agriculture delivery compacts. Dr Adesina urged the need to support young people to go into agriculture, and the Bank is establishing youth entrepreneurship investment banks to provide financial and technical support.

Dr Tanaka said it was important to explore ways of promoting interaction between Japanese and African university students to foster the exchange of knowledge and skills. He agreed to hold further discussions with the AfDB Group to look into other issues raised by Dr Adesina, including the digitization of primary healthcare operations and the establishment of the African Pharmaceutical Technology Foundation to be hosted in Kigali.

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