Africa investor (Ai) at COP28 Newsletter

Ai and Global investors issue Heads of State Call to Action at COP28

Announced during the Leaders Summit at COP28 in Dubai, to fight climate change and deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals announced, Africa investor and 9 other global institutional investment organisations.

Announced during the Leaders Summit at COP28 in Dubai, to fight climate change and deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals announced, Africa investor and 9 other global institutional investment organisations—representing over $100trn of assets under management and advisement—jointly issued a Call to Action to Scale Private Capital Mobilization to Heads of State, policymakers and multilateral development bank (MDB) officials.

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Africa investor (Ai), a leading international investment group, today announced that African Governments and business leaders, were honoured at the Africa investor (Ai) NDC Investment Awards, held on the 5th of December 2023 at COP28, during The COP28 Africa Investment Earthshot Leaders Summit & NDC Investment Awards at Expo City Dubai, UAE.

These first-of-their-kind NDC Investment Awards, sponsored by the African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank (AfGIIB), were designed to recognize achievements across the main NDC 10 project sectors and reward the governments, institutions, and individuals, driving transactions and improving the investment readiness and ambition, of Africa’s NDC projects requiring $3trn of investment by 2030. The 2023 NDC Investment Awards were profiled at the Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi, with the Best Shortlisted NDC projects comprising 160 projects, representing over $35bn of NDC financing and investment opportunities, from 43 African countries and all 5 African sub regions, announced during Climate Week at the 78th Session of the UN General Assembly in New York.

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The Infrastructure Corporation of Nigeria (InfraCorp), is pleased to announce a strategic partnership with the African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank and Solarge International BV, for establishing a solar panel manufacturing factory in Nigeria, contributing significantly to the country’s industrialization drive and aligning with the vision of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for local manufacturing capabilities to create employment, accelerate electrification, and grow the economy while decarbonizing in line with Nigeria’s energy transition commitments.

The Solar PV Manufacturing Plant will be one of the first large scale production facilities in the world for lightweight solar panels with ultra-low carbon footprint. The project will play a pivotal role in Nigeria’s commitment to sustainable local manufacturing and critical infrastructure for achieving Net Zero emissions and advancing its energy transition plan to cleaner and sustainable energy sources, reducing reliance on traditional fossil fuels. More fundamentally, the project reinforces the drive towards localization, green manufacturing and import substitution agenda of the country. Read more



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Africa investor (Ai) unveiled the GEMs3.0 initiative today during COP28 Finance Day.

Over the past decade, more than 500 private investors have asked the MDBs and DFIs to make the Global Emerging Markets Database (GEMs) database available to allow investors to gain a deeper understanding of investment risk in Emerging Markets and Developing Countries (EMDC’s), helping to increase their investment in these countries.

Forced by the alarming public evidence of the tens of billions of dollars of lost opportunities and direct costs to EMDC’s of Multilateral Development Banks (MDB’s), not releasing the GEMs database to investors and credit rating agencies, MDBs have grudgingly committed to providing access to GEMs data in January 2024, through the GEMs2.0 initiative. Read more


While Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are well-recognised place-based investment tools for economic development, there is an urgent need to evolve bankability models and practices in the direction of investable Green Industrial Cities (GICs). GICs are destinations that nurture productive, long-term growth and attract industrial capital at scale. However, they do much more. GIC’s represent a greening and investment transformation that refurbishes existing and future SEZs, making them more attractive and resilient as green manufacturing hubs for productive innovation and industrial growth.

The Africa Climate Summit 2023 and its Nairobi Declaration underscored the need for institutional investor public partnerships to mobilise private capital at scale and speed to make the continent a global green technologies and manufacturing leader and capture its outsized share of the $10 trillion per annum and growing global Green Industrial Economy. While investments are pivotal, so are the methods and tools that will ultimately unite the interests of both institutional investors, industrial companies, SME’s, and local communities to deliver a place-based, just energy investment transition. This is of particular importance for communities sitting on significant mineral reserves critical for green transition technologies in high global demand.

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With more than $100trn of domestic and global institutional assets represented at the Summit, influential public and private sector investment leaders gathered at the COP28 Africa Investment Earthshot Leaders’ Summit, in the first major international gathering of institutional investors following the Africa Climate Summit. The aim is to shape an African investment Earthshot Investment Allocation Plan for the Nairobi Declaration and to mobilize private capital at a scale that can be deployed at speed, through Institutional Investor-Public Partnerships (IIPP’s) that can optimally marry African regional and global energy market demand, with Africa’s industrial and Just Energy Transformation and growth.

Hosted by the COP28 Presidency, in association with The African Union Development Agency (AUDA), The AU Continental Business Network (CBN), Africa Investor (Ai) Group, and The Energy Nexus Network (TENN), the Summit underscored that Green industrialization with global commercial, technology partnerships, and long duration offtakes, are the only way that Africa can leapfrog from a $9bn to a $7trn participation in global green value chains. Read more


Mercer, a business of Marsh McLennan (NYSE: MMC), the world’s leading professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy, and people advising trillions of institutional assets, shared asset allocation assumptions at the COP28 Africa Investment Earthshot Leaders’ Summit, hosted by the COP28 Presidency, in association with The African Union Development Agency (AUDA), The AU Continental Business Network (CBN), Africa Investor (Ai) Group, and The Energy Nexus Network (TENN).

The COP28 Africa Investment Earthshot Leaders’ Summit builds on the Africa Climate Summit and the African Union’s 5% Infrastructure Investment Allocation Agenda (The 5% Agenda) to establish African green industrial infrastructure as a globally competitive investable asset class.

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COP28 Videos



African Climate Investment Awards Shortlist announced at UN Climate Week in New York

The shortlist for the highly coveted NDC Investment Awards, sponsored by the African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank (AfGIIB), was unveiled at UN Climate Week in New York, following the UN Secretary Generals Ambition Summit. These first-of-their-kind global African climate investment awards, launched at COP27 in Egypt and showcased during the successful Africa Climate Summit in Nairobi, are designed to raise ambition, globally recognize achievements across the main NDC project sectors, inspire and reward governments, developers, investors and development partners, driving private climate capital mobilization and improving the investment readiness of Africa’s NDC projects, which require over $3 trillion of investment by 2030. This year’s awards see the addition of Presidential Investment Statesman of the Year Awards, and exciting new private capital mobilisation and multi-stakeholder categories, such as the Best Investable NDC Adaption Initiative of the Year, Best Bankable Donor NDC Initiative of the Year, Best Blended Investment NDC Initiative of the Year, Best Financeable NDC City Initiative of the Year, Best GreenTech NDC Initiative of the Year and the Best Youth NDC Investment Initiative of the Year. The shortlist includes 160 projects public and private sector sponsored projects, representing approximately USD 40bn of NDC financing and investment opportunities, from 43 African countries, covering all 5 African sub regions. The 2023 NDC Investment Awards high-level Adjudication panel consist of:
  • Dr. Hubert Danso, Chairman of Africa investor and the Chair of the NDC Awards Adjudication panel.
  • Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO and UN SRSG for Sustainable Energy for All, Co-Chair of UN-Energy.
  • John Denton, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC).
  • Kandeh Yumkella, Former UN Under-Secretary-General and Special Representative of the Secretary-General and CEO.
  • Ziad-Alexandre Hayek, President of the World Association of PPP Units (WAPPP).
Commenting from New York at the shortlist announcement, Dr. Hubert Danso, Chairman of Africa investor (Ai) and the Chair of the NDC Investment Awards Adjudication panel, said,
“We are delighted during this critical leadership year of Africa’s COP27 Presidency, the successful Africa Climate Summit, the SDG review and the COP Global Stocktake, to host these ambitious 2023 NDC Investment Award candidates success stories, which reinforce Africa’s investment competitiveness and central role as the world’s green industrial investment destination. The opportunities that governments and investors have, to collaborate through institutional investor-public partnerships (IIPPs), and to co-create ambitious, at scale blended investments that optimally marry regional and global market demand with Africa’s industrial and just energy system transformation, transition and growth, will ensure the continent optimises its share of the $10trn pa and growing global green industrial economy, assisting accelerate investment in a just energy future for Africa and the world."
The 2023 NDC Investment awards winners will be announced at COP28 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). See the below 2023 NDC Investment Awards shortlist nominees:
1. Best Waste NDC Initiative of the Year
No. Project Name             Country
1. The Power of Waste- Phoenix Edison Nigeria
2. Zero Organic Waste to Landfills Zimbabwe
3. Empowering waste pickers to create a sustainable waste management system; Ghana
4. Mega Gas Alternative Energy Enterprise Ltd Kenya
5. Women re- and up cycling plastic trash Nigeria
6. Clean-Seas Morocco Morocco
7. National Solid Waste Management Program Egypt
8. Employment promotion for women for the green transformation in Africa (WE4D) Kenya, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda
9. Sabi Recycling Nigeria
10. Sustainable Waste Management (Phasing Out Open Waste Burning) Continent Wide

2. Best Energy NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. 60 Mw Solar Plant in Salama District Malawi
2. Lekela Power Morocco
3. BOAD Climate Finance Facility to Scale Up Solar Investments in Francophone Countries West Africa
4. The Energy Transition Accelerator Scale green hydrogen infrastructure Kenya
5. Siwa Solar PV Plant Egypt
6. Renewable Energy Assets Kenya
7. Port Victoria Wind power project Seychelles
8. Morocco Solar Home Systems Morocco
9. Ile de Romainville Solar Park Seychelles
10. The Energy Transition Accelerator (ETA) SCALE (Scaling Climate Action by Lowering Emissions) initiative Africa/ Global

3. Best Transport NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name  Country
1. BasiGo Ltd Kenya
2. Ampersand e-Mobility Kenya
3. The New Bugesera International Airport Rwanda
4. Electric Light Rail Network Project Egypt
5. Jali E-Mobility Financing Rwanda
6. Clean Air Africa East Africa
7. Facilitating Zambia’s Transition to e-mobility Zambia
8. Implementation of One-Stop Joint Border Posts (JBPs) in Africa Kenya, Burkina Faso, Togo,  Cote D'Ivoire, and Mali
9. Mobility For Africa Mauritius
10. Seko E-WAKA project Kenya

4. Best Urban Development NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. The City of Nairobi Kenya
2. Chongwe Smart City Renewable Energy Project Zambia
3. Nexgen Sustainable City Egypt
4. Nyandugu Urban Wetland Eco-Tourism Park Rwanda
5. Africa Sustainable investment & Infrastructure Programme Madagascar
6. SA-One Million Tree Campaign South Africa
7. The Parks South Africa
8. N’Djamena Urban Resilience Project Chad
9. Algeria 5 cities from scratch Algeria
10. Green Buildings and Retrofits for Affordable Housing Project Rwanda

5. Best Forestry NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Imperative Global-Carbon Market Facility Malawi
2. Debt for nature Swap Instrument Gabon
3. Shire Valley Transformation Project (SVTP) Malawi
4. Building the Resilience of Local Communities in Zambia through the Introduction of Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) into Priority Ecosystems; including Wetlands and Forests Zambia
5. Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) into Priority Ecosystems, including Wetlands and Forests Malawi
6. Restoring Malawi’s Land to Harness Water Regreening Africa Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Rwanda, Somali
7. Tree Value Chain Development 2022-23 Reforestation Campaign Madagascar
8. Central Africa Forest Initiative (CAFI) Gabon
9. Sustainable charcoal production and cooking stoves in Central Liberia Liberia
10. Enabling People to Restore Land in the Central African Republic Central Africa Republic

6. Best Financeable NDC City Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Green City Kigali (GCK) Rwanda
2. Eko Atlantic City Nigeria
3. Kigali Innovation City (KIC) Rwanda
4. Seme City Benin
5. Konza Techno City Kenya
6. African Green Industrial Cities Initiative Across African Cities
7. African Water Cities Across African Cities
8. African Smart Cities Across African Cities
9. King City Ghana
10. Vision City Greening Phase 2 Rwanda

7. Best GreenTech NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Catalyst Fund- Early stage Tech startups Africa
2. Kawi Safi 2- Low-carbon technologies Africa
3. Farmer Lifeline Technologies Kenya
4. D-Olivette Enterprise Nigeria and Benin
5. Trees for the Future's drone project (Tanzania Mali, Senegal, Kenya, and Uganda)
6. The Third Eye Project Kenya Kenya
7. DigiCow Kenya
8. PowerTrust Across Africa Across Africa
9. SunCulture Across Africa
10. Money4Glass South Africa

8. Best Agriculture NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. NNC-Agricultural residue to achieve health and climate benefits from cleaner cooking Nigeria  
2. Farming and Solar powered irrigation (Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast)
3. Akwaaba Feeds Ghana
4. Green Again Crop Diagnosis App Cameroon
5. Grain Storage Projects Africa South Africa and Tanzania
6. The SCARF Project Tanzania
7. Akatale on Cloud Uganda
8. African Agricultural Transformation Initiative (Ghana, Malawi, Kenya, Senegal)
9. Value4Her Across Africa
10. AFR100-Restoration of Degraded Land Across Africa

9. Best Education NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Food for Education (F4E) Kenya
2. Electric Mission South Africa
3. Mozambique Improvement of Skills Development Mozambique
4. General Education Quality Improvement Program for Equity (GEQIP-E) Ethiopia
5. Somalia Empowering Women through Education and Skills Project - "Rajo Kaaba" Somalia
6. Development Regional Teachers' Initiative in Africa and for Africa Africa
7. Global Partnership for Education (GPE) Africa
8. Education Cannot Wait (ECW) Africa
9. Africa Hydromet Program Strengthening Climate Resilience in Sub-Saharan Africa Burkina Faso, Mali
10. Barka Fund Africa

10. Best Health NDC Initiative

No. Project Name             Country
1. Arch Holdings' Clean Cooking Ghana  
2. Global Health Corps (GHC) 2022 (Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia, America)
3. The Friendship Bench Project Zimbabwe
4. The Healthy Learners Model Programme Zambia
5. Drop Access and Vaccibox Solar Powered Refrigeration Kenya
6. Strengthening disease surveillance systems, capacity of laboratories, and staff skills on public health emergency preparedness and coordination Burkina Faso  
7. Cabo Verde - Strengthening National Health Security through One Health approach​ Cabo Verde
8. Health emergencies preparedness and response strengthening in Togo Togo
9. Yemen pandemic preparedness and response project (PPRP) Yemen
10. Zambia Multi-sectorial Pandemic Preparedness and Response Project (ZaMPPR) Zambia

11. Best Water NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. The Grand Inga Dam Project Democratic Republic of Congo
2. Climate Investor Two (CI2) Water, Sanitation, and Oceans Infrastructure Projects Across Africa/Global
3. Restoring the health of agro-ecological zones of the fragile rangeland and mountain landscapes through Ecosystem-Based Adaptation (EbA) Uganda
4. Orange-Senqu River Strategic Action Lesotho, South Africa, Namibia
5. Project Kasongo Lunda Democratic Republic of Congo
6. Project Digeluna Tijjo Ethiopia
7. Water For People Uganda
8. Project Ndumbi Seconary School Kenya
9. Tara Primary School Project Zambia
10. Katsina State Water Board’s Water Supply Services Nigeria

12. Best Tourism NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Sustainable Tourism Strategic Plan Development in Sierra Leone Sierra Leone, Italy, and South Africa
2. Rhino Africa Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Namibia
3. African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) Across Africa
4. Egypt Mainstream Biodiversity Into Tourism Development Egypt
5. UNWTO Program Regional Commission for Africa Across Africa
6. Modderfontein Reserve South Africa
7. Wilderness Mombo Camp Botswana
8. Travel Local South Africa/Global
9. Green Safaris Zambia & Malawi
10. Tourism Recovery, Diversification and Resilience Project Gambia

13. Best Investable NDC Adaptation Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Building the Resilience of Local Communities in Zambia through the Introduction of Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) into Priority Ecosystems, including Wetlands and Forests Zambia  
2. The Africa Adaption Acceleration Program's Food Security program Across Africa  
3. Global Program on Locally Led Adaptation Across Africa
4. Africa Adaption Initiative Ethiopia/Across Africa
5. The South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) South Africa
6. The Adaption Fund Africa/Global
7. The Africa Adaption Acceleration Program Africa
8. The Great Green Wall Africa
9. Resilient Water Accelerator' (Water Aid) Africa/Global
10. Climate Investor Two Africa/Asia/South America

14. Best Bankable Donor Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. SA-H2 Fund (Green Hydrogen Fund) South Africa
2. UNDP Resilience Hub Africa Africa
3. Just Energy Transition Partnership (JET-P) for Senegal Senegal
4. Just Energy Transition Partnership (JET-P) for South Africa South Africa
5. Accelerated Partnership For Renewables in Africa (APARA) Kenya, Denmark, Germany and UAE
6. The Middle East & North Africa Multi-Donor Trust Fund North Africa
7. WWF Bankable Nature Solutions The Commonwealth Climate Finance Africa/Global
8. Access Hub (Eswatini, Mauritius, Namibia, Seychelles, Zambia)
9. Ethihad 7 Across Africa
10. EU-Africa Global Gateway Investment Package Across Africa

15. Best Blended Investment NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. Risk Sharing Backstop Facility (RSBF) Nigeria
2. The Acumen Resilient Agriculture Fund (ARAF) Across Africa
3. Otjikoto Biomass Power Project Namibia
4. Unlock 10 gigawatts (GW) of clean energy project Africa
5. Catalytic Finance Foundation Africa/Global
6. Philanthropy Lab Across Africa
7. Catalytic Capital Africa (2CAfrica) Commitment Objective 2023-2025 Across Africa
8. Nigerian Wholesale Impact Investment Fund (WIIF) Nigeria
9. GAIA's Blended Finance Fund Across Africa
10. AgDevC Sub-saharan Africa Across Africa

16. Best Youth NDC Initiative of the Year

No. Project Name             Country
1. KALTANI Recycling and Waste Management Project Nigeria
2. YouthADAPT program Across Africa
3. Ivoire Myciculture Distribution (IMD) Cote d'Ivoire
4. Primary Education Equity in Learning Program Kenya
5. Piloting social protection and WASH interventions to keep adolescent girls in school in Zimbabwe Zimbabwe
6. Girls Empowerment and Learning Project Angola
7. The Restoration of Eyecare Through Innovation and Awareness (RETINA) Nigeria
8. Uman4Uman Sierra Leone
9. Ethnodesign Global Kenya
10. Biha Eco Venture Uganda
  ENDS** Note to Editors For more information on the Ai African NDC Investment Awards, visit: www.ndcinvestmentawards.com, or email: tmutasa@africainvestor.com About The NDC Investment Awards Headline sponsor The African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank (AfGIIB) is an African Union-convened and supported African institutional investor-led, global climate investment platform, to catalyze private capital for Africa’s green transition. Visit www.afgiib.com for more information. About Africa investor (Ai) Group Africa investor (Ai) Group is an institutional investment holding platform that aligns its pools of capital from sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, family offices, and long-term investors with vetted infrastructure, private equity, and technology investment opportunities in Africa. Visit www.africainvestor.com

African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank Announces $20trn Advisory Board At G7 – Africa Investor Summit

Cornwall, Addis Ababa, Johannesburg, Cairo, Paris, Washington
  The African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank (AfGIIB), today announced its Advisory Board of African and global institutional investment leaders, representing over $20trn of assets under management and advisement. The announcement took place during the G7-Africa investor Summit, held in association with the G7’s institutional Investor Leaders Network (ILN), on the sidelines of the G7 Summit in Cornwall. African sovereign wealth and pension funds have been crucial to form new and innovative multi-stakeholder partnerships; that address climate change; the economic recovery of COVID-19; increase investment in African infrastructure; and realize the aspirations of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank (AfGIIB) initiative is an African Union-convened, African institutional investor-led, global finance initiative, to catalyze private capital for Africa’s green transition, in the run up to COP27 in Africa and beyond. The AfGIIB was announced during the March 2021 Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, hosted by the United Nations United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. The AfGIIB initiative recognizes that the African green infrastructure finance market is highly fragmented, representing a need to create a world class international pan African investment platform to mobilize this financing market and institutional capital at scale. The AfGIIB’s mission, is to create a specialist, independent, catalytic and commercially run, pan African Green infrastructure Investment Bank, to catalyze private capital to accelerate Africa’s green transition. The AfGIIB will also assist the continent and investors address:
AfGIIB announced during the Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, hosted by the United Nations United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, that its immediate priority would be to establish a high-level Advisory board of African and international institutional investment leaders, governments and technical advisors, to structure the platform and present progress updates, during the upcoming African Union (AU), G7, G20, COP26 Summits.
“We fully support the establishment of the African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank (AfGIIB) initiative and the announcement of its Advisory Board. I further thank all of you distinguished leaders who have agreed to serve on its advisory board. “ Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, CEO, The African Union Development Agency (AUDA)
During the G7-Africa investor Summit, held in association with ILN, AfGIIB unveiled its prestigious Advisory Board Members, which include:
AfGIIB Strategic Advisors
“The AfGIIB is honored to count such accomplished and committed African and global institutional investment and public sector leaders, on its prestigious Advisory Board, to champion and create a specialist green infrastructure investment platform, that supports the continents green transition, creates jobs, increases the continents share of the industrial green global economy, whilst at the same time delivers globally competitive risk adjusted returns for its investors. The AfGIIB Advisory Board will also be a powerful green investment mobilization sounding board, for the continent, as we prepare to take over the COP26 process in November, and host an outstanding and green finance friendly COP27 next year on African soil.” Hubert Danso, Chairman, Ai
For more information visit:  www.afgiib.com

Abu Dhabi Wealth Fund Targets Africa, Renewables to Lift Returns

(Bloomberg) -- Abu Dhabi’s top sovereign wealth fund is looking to Africa and renewable energy to generate greater returns, while relying more on artificial intelligence to mine data and spot new investment opportunities.

“With an abundance of natural resources and young, growing and increasingly educated populations, African countries are among those offering the greatest potential for long-term investors,” said Abu Dhabi Investment Authority Managing Director Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. “We already routinely incorporate climate-change considerations into all of our investment proposals, and have been steadily expanding our exposure to renewable energy.” The $710 billion fund, known as ADIA, this year started a climate-change equity portfolio aimed at boosting its green-economy exposure, and is a shareholder in sustainable-energy projects that generate more than 20 gigawatts of power. ADIA’s 20-year annualized returns through December of last year were 4.8%, the lowest since 2008, according to the fund’s 2019 review. It blamed the absence of strong gains in the late 1990s for the drop. Thirty-year annualized rates of return were 6.6%, compared with 6.5% in 2018. Sovereign wealth funds in the Gulf, where governments are struggling to absorb the impact of lower oil prices, have been making adjustments to generate higher yields. Africa Prospects While ADIA continues to see China and India as the global economy’s growth engines, it’s monitoring developments on the world’s poorest continent for opportunities. Nigeria’s stock market is the best-performing in the world after Argentina this year, while dollar bonds issued by Angola, Zambia and Ghana posted the best returns among emerging markets last month. Five of the world’s 10 fastest-growing economies will be found in Africa through 2022, according to forecasts compiled by Bloomberg. Investors Are Waking Up to Some of the Most-Maligned Markets ADIA is betting that advances in technology are “likely to bring the greatest changes to the investment industry in the decade to come,” Al Nahyan said in the review released on Tuesday. In response, ADIA earlier this year made a string of hires to become part of a team that is building out its artificial intelligence and machine learning expertise. “ADIA has made it a priority to integrate technology throughout our investment process, in ways that support our ability to generate insights and achieve superior returns,” the managing director said. It employs about 1,700 people and besides developed markets equities, which makes up as much as 42% of ADIA’s portfolio, the fund holds bonds, alternative assets, real estate, private equity, infrastructure and cash. ©2020 Bloomberg L.P. Read more at: https://www.bloombergquint.com/business/abu-dhabi-wealth-fund-targets-africa-renewables-to-lift-returns Copyright © BloombergQuint

African Asset Owners Co-investment Partnerships 27 August, 2020

Africa investor (Ai) partners Bloomberg African Asset Owner Series

Africa investor (Ai) partners Bloomberg and The Continental Business Network (CBN) on first ever African Asset Owner Series on Co-investment Partnerships.

This inaugural event in the series, will feature two panels focused on the African Union's 5% Infrastructure Investment Agenda and global co-investment partnerships in support of the African Union's Agenda 2063.

The African Asset Owners Series is designed to connect senior leaders and analysts from across the globe to explore the changing dynamic of asset owner investment on the African continent. This is the first of three virtual events taking place throughout 2020.

To register for the event go to: CLICK HERE >>

Djibouti sets up sovereign wealth fund, targets $1.5 bln in 10 years

NAIROBI, June 25 (Reuters) - Djibouti is setting up a sovereign wealth fund for domestic and regional investment, aiming to fund it to the tune of $1.5 billion over the next decade, the government said on Thursday.

Wealthy nations traditionally use sovereign wealth funds to invest surplus billions overseas to prevent inflation at home, diversify income streams and accumulate savings.

Djibouti will however use its fund to finance domestic investment including in the telecoms, logistics and infrastructure sectors. It will also prioritize investments in the Horn of Africa region, the government said.

The tiny nation is home to both Chinese and U.S. naval bases. Its strategic position on the Gulf of Aden means it overlooks the world’s busiest shipping lanes for oil cargos.

The fund, whose sole shareholder is the government, will be required to reinvest all its net profits.

The government did not say how it will raise the cash for the fund, only stating that there will be “significant initial investment with recurring resources”.

“Despite the global health crisis related to the coronavirus pandemic, the country is determined, more than ever, to invest in the future and tomorrow’s economy,” the government said.

Reporting by Giulia Paravicini Editing by Duncan Miriri and Nick Macfie


AUDA-NEPAD confirms Hubert Danso as Chairperson of the Continental Business Network Council

Institutional Investment Leader, Hubert Danso, internationally-renowned infrastructure Investment Advocate, was today formally appointed as the Chairperson of the African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD) Continental Business Network Council (CBN). Mr Danso who held the position as CBN interim Chairperson since September 2019, is also the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Africa investor (Ai) Group and serves as the Chairman of the African Sovereign Wealth & Pension Fund Leaders Forum and Chairs the CFA New York Society, Global Asset Owners Advisory Council, comprising the largest institutional investor communities, with over $20trillion dollars of assets under management (AUM) and advisement. Mr Danso is also a Commissioner of the Blockchain Commission for Sustainable Development. Speaking on Mr Danso’s appointment, as Chairperson of the CBN Council Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, Chief Executive Officer, African Union Development Agency-NEPAD said: “As CBN Interim Chairperson, you have played a critical role in advancing the work of the CBN. I commend you for your leadership and your dedication to the vision of the CBN. I look forward to working with you closely as Chairperson to advance the impact of the CBN and and I count on you to lead a dynamic African investment community response to the COVID-19 pandemic”. As the CBN Chairman, Mr Danso will support the AUDA in its work with African Union Heads of State, infrastructure investment leaders and policy makers, to deepen the African investment community’s participation in the COVID-19 response, PIDA and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) projects, and support the implementation of the African Unions’ 5% Agenda Initiative, which is an African institutional investor compact with African Heads of State, to increase African institutional asset allocation to infrastructure, from approximately 1.5% of assets under management today, to 5% over the next 5 years.

An African Model for This Moment: Local Institutional Funding of Infrastructure

Governments in the region are pushing for more high impact infrastructure investments, but public resources are increasingly under pressure. Kenyan Pension Funds Investment Consortium (KEPFIC) is a leading initiative in Africa investing in infrastructure and private equity with potential for replication. 

Building on an initial African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum meeting hosted at the 2017 Africa investor (Ai) Infrastrurcture Investment Summit in Durban, MiDA Advisors, an investment advisory firm that assisted in the formation of KEPFIC, is working with Batseta, South Africa’s largest trade organization of pension funds, to replicate some of the achievements learned from the KEPFIC model.

As African debt levels shake regional economies and strain government coffers in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the urgency of marshalling local savings for vital infrastructure is clear. Dwarfed in size by global institutions and commercial lending, however, African institutional investors have been slow to fully harness their market potential to fund infrastructure and other high impact equity investments.

What would happen if international development agencies used foreign assistance funding to help local investors access the markets and co-investment opportunities they need to propel their communities to prosperous, self-reliant futures?

Buey Ray Tut, a South Sudanese refugee and founder of Aqua Africa, has argued for years that foreign assistance funding models have merely progressed from “give a man a fish” to “teach a man to fish” approaches. “Why don’t we take that one step further?” he asked. “Why don’t we help the person create a market…so he could sell the fish [and be] aid independent?”

The international development community has increasingly responded, creating durable models with potential for replication. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), for example, has helped Kenyan institutional investors play a bigger role in financing the country’s infrastructure—the transportation, water, sanitation, energy, and housing projects integral for growing thriving and inclusive societies. Kenya currently faces an infrastructure investment gap of approximately $2.1 billion annually. Historically, the nation’s infrastructure has been funded by the public sector, increasingly under pressure to channel scarce resources toward blunting the impact of the pandemic on livelihoods and jobs.

In 2017, USAID’s Mobilizing Institutional Investors to Develop Africa’s Infrastructure (MiDA) Initiative and the World Bank began a partnership to lay the groundwork for enabling local pension funds to invest in alternative asset classes, such as infrastructure and private equity.

“The World Bank had been working in Kenya to reform the regulations around infrastructure investing,” says Aymeric Saha, who served as the managing director of the MiDA Initiative until its conclusion last year. “It was the right enabling environment for MiDA to engage with institutional investors. Kenya’s pension funds had been growing quickly, and their portfolios were highly concentrated in government securities and a few locally traded equities. They needed to diversify.”

Investing in infrastructure has generally yielded attractive returns for investors. However, these projects require expensive structuring and due diligence fees, causing most asset owners worldwide to stay away from the asset class.

“We decided that the best way to move forward was to support the creation of a consortium of local institutional investors that would enable them to jointly explore investment opportunities in alternative assets,” says Saha.

In 2018, six local funds formed the Kenyan Pension Funds Investment Consortium (KEPFIC), which allows the funds to share the costs, knowledge, and due diligence teams necessary for exploring these opportunities. It also enables greater mobilization of capital and increased bargaining power. As of 2020, 12 local funds have joined KEPFIC, and another eight are in the process of joining.

USAID, through the Kenya Investment Mechanism, is assisting KEPFIC with the establishment of a secretariat and a legal structure, and MiDA Advisors, an advisory firm established by Saha and others to continue the MiDA Initiative’s mission, is helping to ensure that KEPFIC has the highest standards of governance and a strong investment strategy.

KEPFIC will begin the raise for its first shared fund this year, starting with $2 million commitments from its founding members. In partnership with USAID INVEST,  MiDA Advisors is assisting KEPFIC with the selection of its asset manager.

“Facilitating co-investment with U.S. pension funds is one of KEPFIC’s long-term goals, and that requires having an asset manager who can address the concerns of both local and U.S. funds,” says Saha.

Some KEPFIC members have already begun investing in alternative assets. Kenyan Power Pension Fund and Britam Insurance recently made commitments to Everstrong Capital, a U.S.-based asset management firm focused on investing in African infrastructure. Such investments have a significant impact on the local communities.

“The Everstrong Kenya Infrastructure Fund is designed to mobilize capital which is critical in meeting the funding gap for infrastructure in Kenya and selected other regions of East Africa,” explains Philip Dyk, managing partner at Everstrong Capital. “Investments in infrastructure provide diversification to fund investors because of the predictable, long-term revenue and low correlation to economic cycles. Energy, transport, communications, and water utility assets provide essential services that are used even during times of uncertainty, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Other KEPFIC members— KenGen Defined Contribution Scheme and other pension funds—have approved commitments to a private equity fund managed by Development Partners International (DPI), a London-based pan-African private equity firm. DPI invests in companies that benefit from the growth of Africa’s emerging middle class and provides the technical assistance needed to ensure that each portfolio company and its employees thrive.

A meeting between MiDA and Batesta, South Africa’s largest trade organization of pension funds, hosted at the 2017 Africa investor (Ai) Infrastructure Investment Summit in Durban, throught a partnership with the African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum, is now bearing fruit for expanded opportunities. MiDA Advisors is working with Batseta to help kickstart the formation of a South African consortium initiative, replicating aspects of the KEPFIC model. South Africa’s funds will seek solutions tailored to the country’s larger and more advanced capital markets, financial institutions, and infrastructure developers.

The appeal and adaptability of consortium models makes them a viable option for other African nations seeking to mobilize local resources for financing their infrastructure needs.  “Establishing these consortiums definitely speaks to using development assistance as a means for creating self-reliance,” says Saha. “Local pension funds will now be effectively investing local savings in sectors that are creating jobs for people, having significant impact on the economic development of Africa, and producing humanitarian outcomes for local communities.”

By Vanessa Holcomb Mann, Senior Investment Advisor, and Emily Langhorne, Specialist, USAID INVEST


Africa investor RegTech Investors Summit Calls for Acceleration of eTrade Negotiations on the African Continental Free Trade Area due to COVID-19

Africa investor (Ai) today confirmed it successfully hosted the Africa investor RegTech Investors Consultative Summit, which convened leading RegTech investors from across the continent and globe. The Summit overwhelmingly call called on African Union Heads of State as a consequence of COVID-19 and to protect African economic growth and the digitzation of SME’s, to accelerate the eTrade Negotiations on the African Continental Free Trade Area from 2022 to 2021.

The Africa investor (Ai) RegTech Investors Consultative Summit was held in partnership with AfricaPLC (Ai’s eTrade and eTrade Finance and Logistics Marketplace Platform), and the Africa Fintech Summit.

The Summit which was Chaired by Hubert Danso, CEO and Chairman Africa investor Group and Chairman, African Union Development Agency (AUDA) Continental Business Network (CBN), builds on the recent Africa investor (Ai) African eTrade Leaders Consultative Summit, held with the Secretary Generals of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Berne Union International Union of Credit & Investment Insurers, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), the World Customs Organization (WCO) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), following which, the CBN requested a follow up RegTech Investors Consultative Summit, to generate concrete recommendations from leading global RegTech stakeholders as part of its Policy Recommendations Statement (PRS), to be submitted by the CBN on eTrade and the AfCFTA to African Union Heads of State in light of COVD-19. 

With a 103% increase in year on year (YoY) investment during the first 3 quarters of 2019, RegTech is one of the fastest growing tech categories for global investors. As African governments accelerate the adoption of technology and pursue an ambitious regional eTrade and eCommerce agenda through the USD $3.2 trillion African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), a unique opportunity exists for African governments to employ RegTech solutions to greatly reduce the administrative burden and costs of ensuring firms and individuals are compliant when doing business both within and between African borders. The RegTech investment community has been tasked to table solutions and proposals that allow African governments, regulators and companies, to take a more proactive tech driven approach to tackling regulatory challenges before they occur. 

The Summit comprised two roundtables, Panel 1 focused on Setting the Stage for RegTech Development in Africa: identifying key trends, problems, and opportunities driving the need for RegTech solutions and the second Panel 2, addressed Bringing RegTech Investment Models to Market: building for adoption, investability and the unique considerations in RegTech.

Summit discussion leaders included Hubert Danso, CEO and Chairman, Africa investor Group, Chairman, African Union Development Agency-Continental Business Network, Ashley Smith, Head of Partnerships, Africa Fintech Summit , CBO, Dedalus Global, Alastair Tempest, CEO, ECommerce Forum of Africa , Devraj Basu, Senior Lecturer in Finance, Strathclyde Business School, Mark Henderson, Founding Partner, Agile Process Innovation , Michelle Chivunga N, Founder, CEO, and Investor, Global Policy House UK , Paul Smith, Former President and CEO, CFA Institute, Alan Jeftha, Partner, Dentons , Jason Blackman, Senior Director, Customs, Trade Compliance and Regulatory Affairs, DHL Express,  Kenneth A. Goodwin, Senior Managing Principal and Founder, Jeanensis Capital Markets, Remonda Kirketerp-Møller, CEO and Founder, muinmos, Chris Southworth, Secretary General, ICC United Kingdom.

3 global polls were conducted during Summit that were participated in by stakeholders from across the continent and globally through Facebook, where the Summit was being live streamed to the international investment community and Africans in the Diaspora, which produced the following results:

  1. GLOBAL POLL 1: Should the African Continental Free Trade Area Heads of State accelerate the negotiations on E-Commerce and E-Trade from 2022 to 2021, because of the urgent needs to digitize driven by Trade Distancing’ and COVID-19? ü Yes – 98% ü No – 2%
  2. GLOBAL POLL 2: What are your top 5 Trade Regulatory Ecosystem problems you feel RegTech could solve (list in order of priority)?: * Access to Trade Finance  - 64% * Buyer and seller vetting data – 61% * Logistics – 57% * Customs - 48% * Import-Export Licensing - 30%
  3. GLOBAL POLL 3: Should there be closer partnerships between Market Participants, RegTech Investors, Developers, Regulators and African Policy Makers? * ü Yes – 96% * ü No  -  4%

The Summit concluded with the African Union’s Continental Business Network (CBN) and AfricaPLC as the principal eTrade platform, to advance the policy recommendations resulting from the Consultative process and to present the Recommendations to the African Continental Free Trade Area Secretariat and  the AfricaPLC eTrade platform undertaking to run RegTech pilot projects with technology partners on the 5 priority areas resulting from the poll (Trade Finance, Buyer and Seller Vetting Data, Logistics, Customs and Import-Export Licensing RegTech solutions.

View the Discussion: Africa investor RegTech Investors Consultative Summit

For more information contact: Hubert Danso, CEO and Chairman, Africa investor Group, Chairman, African Continental Business Network (CBN) Email: wedwards@africainvestor.com


Hubert Danso, Africa investor CEO appointed to UN Steering Committee on SDG Investments

Africa investor (Ai) today confirmed Hubert Danso, its CEO and Chairman and the Chairman of the African Union Development Agency Continental Business Network (CBN),  has been appointed to the UNDP high-level Project Steering Committee, that will be advising on the development of the South Africa Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Investor Map.


The UNDP South Africa office convened the high-level Project Steering Committee on the SDG Investor Map, to support President Ramaphosa’s initiatives to attract foreign and domestic investment that’s aligned to the SDG’s from institutional investors, corporations and foundations.

The SDG Investor Map is a dynamic tool containing a range of market-specific investment opportunities for SDG-aligned capital deployment. The Steering Committee’s role is to provide strategic guidance and oversight in the research and development of the SDG Investment Map.

Speaking on his appointment Mr Danso said, “I’m delighted to be able to serve on such an important UN Committee, with such accomplished fellow committee members and under the able leadership of UNDP Resident Representative Mr Ayodele Odusola”.

Mr Danso went on to say, “the SDG Investor Map will be an integral tool to unlock private sector finance not only in South Africa, but represents a model that can be tailored country-by-country and successfully applied across the rest of the African continent.”

The UNDP envisions the launch of the SDG Investor Map in South Africa, to be an integral part of global sustainable financing initiatives and a powerful tool to accelerate private finance and investment in pursuit of the attainment of the 17 SDGs.

For more information contact: Wendy Edwards Email: wedwards@africainvestor.com