The Government of Rwanda and the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) today signed an agreement for the establishment of the Fund for Export Development in Africa (FEDA) and a Memorandum of Understanding on the hosting of the permanent headquarters of FEDA in Kigali.
The agreements were formalized in a signing ceremony at Rwanda’s Embassy in Cairo with representatives from Rwanda’s Embassy in Egypt and Afreximbank.
The agreements were signed by the President and Chairman of the Afreximbank, Professor Benedict Oramah and Rwanda’s Ambassador to Egypt, Ambassador Alfred Kalisa.
FEDA, a subsidiary of Afreximbank, is an equity investment fund designed to provide seed capital to companies operating in Africa, with an emphasis on activities that promote and facilitate intra-African trade, trade-related infrastructure and value added exports in form of both goods and services.
It will invest across all market segments but with greater focus on SMEs which have substantial funding shortages and represent about 90% of businesses in Africa. It will also invest in mature companies and start-up businesses where there is a gap in the marketplace and where investments have a high level of value additionality and development impact in Africa.
The fund will have an initial commitment of US$350 million commitment from Afreximbank and is expected to grow to over US$1 billion within a few years of operation.
The Government of Rwanda, through the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), initiated discussions with Afreximbank in August 2020 to establish the fund’s headquarters in Kigali.
Speaking after the signing ceremony, Professor Benedict Oramah, Afreximbank President said:
“The signing of FEDA Establishment Agreements is a huge milestone towards achieving Afreximbank’s strategic objectives in promoting intra-African trade and export development. It is also important to fast track and attract funding that is important to the development of trade infrastructure between African countries. We are also pleased to have agreed the Headquarters Agreement with the Republic of Rwanda which is a sign of the strength of the existing relationship between Afreximbank and the Republic of Rwanda.”
Speaking on behalf of the Government of Rwanda, Rwanda’s Ambassador to Egypt, Amb. Alfred Kalisa, said:
“The signing of these agreements today is a vote of confidence in Rwanda and its efforts to increase private equity investments in sectors critical to growing intra-African trade and export development. Rwanda is glad to host FEDA as we work together to achieve the goals of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCTA) on the continent. We will work together to ensure that FEDA is successful in driving and achieving its mandate.”
Clare Akamanzi, Chief Executive Officer at the Rwanda Development Board, said:
“Rwanda aspires to become a leading regional financial hub, attracting private investments in the country to drive growth. The establishment of FEDA in Rwanda is a strong boost to these efforts, and will enable Rwandan and African businesses, especially SMEs to compete favourably in export markets in Africa and beyond, create more jobs and lower the continent’s trade deficit. The Government of Rwanda is proud to host FEDA, which will drive Afreximbank’s mandate of ensuring the growth of intra-African trade.”
Nick Barigye, the Chief Executive Officer of Rwanda Finance Limited, said:
“FEDA’s establishment will enhance the profile of Rwanda as an international financial center, increase the potential of attracting equity capital funds and expand the scope and contributions of the financial services sector to the economy of Rwanda. We look forward to working with the FEDA to enable companies and start-up businesses to access the much needed funding for economic development.”
The Rwanda Development Board is a government agency responsible for leading the country’s transformation to a dynamic global hub for business, investment, tourism and innovation. Its mission is to fast track economic development in Rwanda by enabling private sector growth. For more information visit www.rdb.rw.
The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) is a Pan-African multilateral financial institution with the mandate of financing and promoting intra-and extra-African trade. Afreximbank was established in October 1993 and owned by African governments, the African Development Bank and other African multilateral financial institutions as well as African and non-African public and private investors. The Bank was established under two constitutive documents, an Agreement signed by member states, which confers on the Bank the status of an international organization, and a Charter signed by all Shareholders, which governs its corporate structure and operations. Afreximbank deploys innovative structures to deliver financing solutions that are supporting the transformation of the structure of Africa’s trade, accelerating industrialization and intra-regional trade, thereby sustaining economic expansion in Africa. At the end of 2019, the Bank’s total assets and guarantees stood at US$15.5 billion and its shareholders funds amounted to US$2.8 billion. Voted “African Bank of the Year” in 2019, the Bank disbursed more than US$38 billion between 2016 and 2020. Afreximbank has ratings assigned by GCR (international scale) (A-), Moody’s (Baa1) and Fitch (BBB-). The Bank is headquartered in Cairo, Egypt.
Doreen Ingabire, Head of Communications, Rwanda Development Board on +250 78952 55 98 or at email@example.com.