Following the Finance In Common Summit held in November 2020 and in preparation for the Summit on Financing African Economies to be convened by President Emmanuel Macron on 18 May, the African Development Bank, the African Public Development Banks in collaboration with the Association of African Development Finance Institutions (AADFI) and the International Development Finance Club (IDFC), hosted the Finance in Common Spring Meeting, dedicated to “Africa’s green and resilient recovery: a common objective”.

The summit aimed to devise joint actions to help boost a strong and inclusive recovery in Africa, grounded in a dynamic private sector. In their introductory speeches, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank and Rémy Rioux, President of the Agence Française de Développement invited all Public Development Banks (PDBs) to create a resilient African society like a Baobab tree with roots deep enough to lift people out of poverty for good.

The EIB was represented by its Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle, who discussed the role of African Public Development Banks and their partners in the reorientation of financial flows towards climate and the UN Sustainable Development Goals during the COVID crisis. He was joined by Koen Doens, European Commission Director General for International Partnerships, Patrick Dlamini, Chief Executive Officer of the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) Kevin Kanina Kariuki, Vice-President, Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth at the African Development Bank (AfDB) and Rachel Tuner, former Director of Economic Development at Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

EIB Vice-President Fayolle stressed the crucial role played by African and European Public Development Banks in reconciling short-term countercyclical responses and promoting a sustainable and green recovery.  Taking the Baobab analogy, he reminded the importance of microfinance through the example of Baobab Senegal supported by the EIB to increase access to finance and financing inclusion in Africa. Finally he explained how working in partnership is in the DNA of the EIB, whether with European and international partners within Team Europe or with Public Development Banks (PDBs) across Africa.

This was confirmed by Koen Doens, European Commission Director General for International Partnerships (DG INTPA), who reminded that PDBs generate 10% of global public spending and are therefore essential to tackle the global challenges. Koen Doens also stressed the need to develop the fiscal and monetary tools, such as blending and guarantees, to support the private sector in Africa.

All panelists agreed on the need to increase green investment in Africa and notably for climate adaptation and residence, and to help develop a green bond market in Africa.