The African Development Bank (AfDB) Executive Director for the Southern Africa Group I Constituency, Mr. Cornelius Dekop paid a courtesy call to SADC Secretariat in Gaborone, Botswana, on the 15th November 2019.
SADC and AfDB have had a long-standing bilateral partnership for development, which has produced significant results in the priority areas of cooperation at both regional and national level. Since 1998 when the first cooperative agreement was signed between SADC and AfDB, a number of regional projects have been implemented. To date the bank has bankrolled about 200 projects to the tune of 8.5 billion USD.
Mr. Dekop thanked the Executive Secretary, Her Excellency, Dr. Stergomena Lawrence for receiving him and briefed the meeting on the operations of the Bank, and the role of the Executive Directors at the Bank. He among others, stated that the Bank has approved a 125% Seventh (7th) General Capital Increase (GCI) in order to meet its ambitious programs and to maintain the Bank’s AAA rating. He further stated that the resources of the African Development Fund would also be replenished in order to meet the needs of the Bank’s Low Income Regional Member Countries. The GCI 7 will run till 2031, with a repayment period of 8 years for Middle Income Countries, and 12 years for Low Income Countries. The Executive Director encouraged SADC as a region, and SADC Member States to position themselves to benefit from their Bank, by submitting and follow-up on high impact regional projects.
Dr Tax welcomed Mr. Dekop and thanked him for engaging with SADC Secretariat to enhance SADC – AfDB collaboration. She agreed with the Executive Director that the current SADC portfolio of projects at the Bank was not satisfactory. In this regard, Dr. Tax informed the Executive Director that the Secretariat with the support of the Bank has developed a list of SADC priority infrastructure projects, some of which are ready for immediate inclusion into the Banks pipeline of projects, and further engagements with relevant SADC Member States are ongoing.
The two Parties agreed that there was need for the two organisations to strengthen their engagement, with the Secretariat, Member States and the Executive Directors of the Bank.
The Executive Secretary was accompanied by the Deputy Secretary, Regional Integration, Dr. Thembinkosi Mhlongo, Deputy Executive Secretary, Corporate Affairs, Ambassador Joseph Nourrice, while Mr. Dekop was accompanied by Director, International Economic Policy Coordination Section, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development in Botswana, Ms. Masego Mogodu.