African Development Bank (AfDB) is joining hands with African Guarantee Fund (AGF) to unlock $1.3 to $2 billion in loans that would benefit women entrepreneurs in Africa through a concerted partnership with financial institutions.
According to the press release on the website of AfDB, “The move signals the launch of AFAWA’s Guarantee for Growth (G4G) program, which aims to make available up to $3 billion in financing for women entrepreneurs through de-risking and technical assistance measures. Already, financial institutions in Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda are signing on to the program.”
What they are saying
According to Jules Ngankam, African Guarantee Fund’s Group CEO:
- “As the implementing partner of AFAWA’s Guarantee for Growth program, we are already observing an increased appetite from banks for this innovative product that seeks to support women entrepreneurs. We have recently signed agreements with leading banks on the continent who are keen to increase their women SMEs portfolio.
- “AGF has always been cognizant of the importance of supporting women SMEs to enable them fully play their role as drivers of economic growth. We are glad the momentum is increasing and that banks are now willing to take on this particular business segment.”
According to Stefan Nalletamby, the Bank’s Director of Financial Sector Development
“The signing of the AFAWA Guarantee for Growth program with the African Guarantee Fund is a critical milestone for the Bank to successfully deploy on-the-ground financing instruments better suited to addressing the financing and training needs of women-owned small and medium enterprises in Africa for the growth of their businesses.”
According to Esther Dassanou, AFAWA’s Coordinator:
- “There is an urgent need to improve the enabling environment with the right regulations in place, to sustainably de-risk the segment.
- “The Bank will work with regulators to reform the legal and regulatory frameworks affecting women businesses’ access to finance.”
According to Vanessa Moungar, the Bank’s Director for Gender, Women and Civil Society,
- “Donor and private sector-support for the overall AFAWA initiative is helping the Bank set ambitious targets for AFAWA Guarantee for Growth program.
- “The entire Bank ecosystem will be at play – inviting more financial institutions to sign into the program – ensuring engagement, implementation, and ownership at the market and policy levels.”
What you should know
- AFAWA Guarantee for Growth program receives support from the Group of Seven (G7) countries as well as the Netherlands and Sweden
- The target for AFAWA Guarantee for Growth is reach an average of 18,000 women small and medium enterprises and create 80,000 direct jobs
- African women face a $42 billion financing gap, which AFAWA aims to bridge – closely tied to a lack of access to collateral in the form of land and property as well as to knowledge, mentorship, and networks to grow their businesses, which are typically in the informal sector.
- African Guarantee Fund is a non-bank financial institution whose objective is to promote economic development, increase employment and reduce poverty in Africa by providing financial institutions with guarantee products and capacity development assistance specifically intended to support SMEs in Africa.
- African Guarantee Fund was founded by the government of Denmark through the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), the government of Spain through the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development (AECID) and the African Development Bank (AfDB).
- French Development Agency (AFD), Nordic Development Fund (NDF), Investment Fund for Developing Countries (IFU) and KfW Development Bank (KfW) are key shareholders of African Guarantee Fund.
Apapa gridlock: NPA MD says e-Call up will eliminate human intervention and extortion
The MD of the NPA has stated that the introduction of the e-call up system will eliminate extortion by enforcement and security officers.
The Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala-Usman, has said that the introduction of the Electronic Call-up system will eliminate human intervention from the process thereby eliminating extortion by enforcement and security officers.
This is as she also revealed that shipping companies make billions of naira from importers forfeiting their deposits for returned containers due to congestion in and around the ports.
This was disclosed by Bala-Usman during an interview on Channels Television.
The NPA boss said that one of the solutions being introduced is to create holding bays outside the ports for empty containers, so that the containers will no longer be returned to the ports, but instead to these holding bays, with shipping companies taking responsibility.
What the NPA Managing Director is saying
Bala-Usman said, ‘’We have reached a point where we are going to have a strong Electronic Call up that will remove human intervention from the process. One of the key aspects of this E-Call up is the fact that we have approved truck parks where all trucks must sit in order to access the port location.
‘’Having identified this truck park through a public process, we have listed eight truck parks that have been so certified by Lagos State Government and Nigerian Ports Authority as approved truck parks that all trucks that have the intention of doing business in the port will sit and they will be called upon using an electronic call-up.’’
Going further she said, ‘’40-50% of trucks causing congestion are actually trying to return empty containers. Shipping companies make billions of naira from importers forfeiting deposits for returned containers, most deposits are forfeited because of congestion, a status quo that pleases shipping companies.
‘’One solution being introduced is to create holding bays outside the ports for empty containers. So consignees no longer need to return the containers to Ports, but instead to holding bays, where Shipping companies will take responsibility.’’
While acknowledging the fact that there will be glitches and teething issues in the deployment of the electronic call-up system, she, however, said we must start and address the issues as they arise.
What you should know
- As part of measures to resolve the gridlock around the ports axis, the NPA had launched an Electronic Truck call-up system, Eto, designed for the management of truck movement and access to and from the Lagos ports.
- This is to also help complement the drive for a business-friendly and secure environment for port business in Nigeria.
- During the implementation of the new system, all trucks doing business at the ports will be required to park at the approved truck parks until they are called up into the port through the Eto app.
- The Lagos State Government through its newly constituted Traffic Management Enforcement Team to resolve Apapa gridlocks and the Nigerian Port Authority Security Team also identified parks as holding bay for trucks around the metropolis.
"We have reached a point where we are going to have a strong Electronic Call Up that will remove human intervention from the process. The E-call up has approved truck parks where all trucks must sit in order to access the port location."- MD @nigerianports, @hadizabalausman. pic.twitter.com/wmxSveQsK6
— Government of Nigeria (@NigeriaGov) February 25, 2021
MD NPA: 40-50% of trucks causing congestion are actually trying to return empty containers. Shipping Cos make billions of Naira from importers forfeiting deposits for returned containers—most deposits are forfeited because of congestion, a status quo that pleases Shipping Cos (1)
— tolu ogunlesi (@toluogunlesi) February 25, 2021
NAHCO recalls suspended GMD
NAHCO recalled Adetokunbo Fagbemi, its Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.
The Board of Directors of Nigerian Aviation Handling Company Plc (NAHCO Aviance) has recalled Mrs. Adetokunbo Fagbemi, the Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the aviation handling firm.
The GMD was suspended over Management’s failure to diligently secure the delivery of a purchased equipment from vendor within the contracted period and Management’s inability to provide satisfactory/acceptable reason for the unreasonable long delay.
This was disclosed by the Board via a statement issued and seen by Nairametrics on Thursday.
It stated, “The Board is however pleased to inform the investing public and the Exchange that on, Tuesday, February 24, 2021, a satisfactory evidence of departure and arrival dates of the equipment has been received by the board from the equipment manufacturer.
“Consequently, the Board at its emergency meeting today, February 24, 2021, has recalled the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Adetokunbo A. Fagbemi from the suspension and she has resumed work.”
What you should know
- The GMD was suspended by the Board at a meeting held on 27th of January 2021 in line with the Board’s earlier decision that if a certified bill of lading for the equipment was not received by 2nd February 2021, the GMD/CEO shall proceed on suspension with half pay until receipt of acceptable evidence of equipment shipment from the manufacturer.
- Since Fagbemi commenced her suspension on February 3rd, 2021, Mr. Olumuyiwa A. Olumekun, the Group Executive Director, Corporate Services, has been acting as the GMD/CEO.
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