With ADF under pressure, AfDB expands financing options

By Jenny Lei Ravelo 25 May 2015

Men unload goods from a boat at Lamu port in Kenya. One of the country’s key infrastructure projects is the construction of a new port in Lamu, which the government envisions to be the largest in the continent. Photo by: Stanislav Lvovsky / CC BY-NC-ND

There are 40 African countries relying on the African Development Fund, the African Development Bank’s concessional lending facility.

With member countries’ increasing financial needs, ADF resources in recent years have often been nearly or completely utilized. In 2013, resources under ADF-12 for example were expected to be 98 percent exhausted, leaving only 2 percent of the window’s resources unused, partly due to conflicts in some of its member countries, which had an effect on program implementation.

As needs continue to grow however — the continent needs about $48 billion annually in infrastructure financing over the next 10 years — the fund’s available resources alone may no longer be enough.

The bank’s proposed 2015 budget shows as much: Its indicative operational program is set at 1.667 billion units of account ($2.34 billion), 4 percent higher than its estimated ADF lending target of 1.602 billion UA.

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About the author

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Jenny Lei Ravelo@JennyLeiRavelo

Jenny Lei Ravelo is a Devex senior reporter based in Manila. Since 2011, she has covered a wide range of development and humanitarian aid issues, from leadership and policy changes at DfID to the logistical and security impediments faced by international and local aid responders in disaster-prone and conflict-affected countries in Africa and Asia. Her interests include global health and the analysis of aid challenges and trends in sub-Saharan Africa.

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