The total portfolio of African Development Bank (AfDB) in Nigeria netted $4.5 billion in 53 operations. The figure is made up of 30 sovereign operations with networthof $2.7billionrepresenting 60 per cent total commitments. In addition, the bank has 22 non-sovereign operations valued at $1.8 billion. In terms of mapping the bank’s high five strategic priorities projects that will “industrialiseAfricaaccount for 42per centof theportfolio, while projects targeted to improvequalityof lifepeopleof Africa” make up 25 per cent of the portfolio. Other three strategic priorities – ‘Light up and Power Africa’, ‘Feed Africa’and‘IntegrateAfrica’ represent 14 per cent, 10 per cent and 9 per cent respectively .
This was as representatives of Nigeria’s Diaspora, nationalnetworks, and youth and women groups lauded the continental bank for supportingtransformational projects in the country and across Africa at the African Development Bank forum. An AfDB statement issued yesterday by its Nigerian office described August Forum as part of the institution’s ongoing mid-term review of its country strategy for Nigeria. For two days, more than 200 participants received updates on the bank’s work in Nigeria. They discussed projectsinagriculture, thedigital economy, creative industry, trade and private enterprise. Opening the forum, the African DevelopmentBank’s Director-GeneralforNigeria, MrLaminBarrow, expressed hope that the interactive forum would allow for frank exchanges on the bank’s activities, projects and programmes in Nigeria. Barrow stressed the bank’s commitment to participation by women, youth, the Diaspora and other key groups in processes that inform the institution’s initiatives in its regional member countries.
“Stakeholder groups play key roles in driving innovation and entrepreneurship to unlock opportunities in various sectors, including agri-business, industry and the digital economy,” he said. PrincessAdejokeOrelope- Adefulire, Senior Special Assistant to President MuhammaduBuhariontheSustainable Development Goals commended the African Development Bank for its leadership in engaging national and sub-national actors.
“This is the first time we are seeing a multi-lateral developmentfinanceinstitution do this in the recent past,” Orelope-Adefulire said. The Chairperson and CEO of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Dr Abike Dabri-Erewa, thanked the African Development Bank for supporting women and for outreach to the Diaspora, but said more could be done. President of the Nigeria Trade and Investment Centre, Canada, Femi Boyede, encouraged members of the Diaspora to consider clustering for project partnership. Hesaid thiswould havemore impactthanconcentratingon just remittances. TheAfricanDevelopment Bank anchors its current Ni