President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
President Akufo-Addo has urged wealthy economies to channel a portion of their Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) for Africa through the African Development Bank (AfDB).
He said channeling the funds through the AfDB, a prescribed holder of SDRs, will help the continent meet its development needs, including food security and climate change.
He indicated further that the SDRs could be absorbed by the AfDB as equity, which will further expand lending capacity to African countries.
It can also be used to provide additional capital and financing to development banks in Africa, the President asserted.
For him, providing SDRs through Multilateral Development Banks has several benefits, including leveraging the SDRs, and called on the developed economies to allow the leadership of the AfDB to explore options for the strategic use of the SDRs to support Africa.
President Akufo-Addo made the call in the Accra Declaration at the 57th Annual General Meeting of the AfDB, which was co-witnessed by four other Finance Ministers across Africa.
The SDR, an international reserve asset, was created by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 1969 to supplement its member countries’ official reserves.
The President said provision of the SDRs to multilateral development banks would also strengthen the global financial architecture and foster greater complement with the IMF.
He called on Governors of the AfDB to facilitate the amendment of the Articles that prevent the African Development Fund (ADF) from accessing the international capital markets to leverage its balance sheet and raise capital for the development of the continent.
Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, also expressed confidence in the AfDB to help African economies to steer through the fallouts of the Russia-Ukraine war, “which are compounding the existing socio-economic vulnerabilities triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
He said the short-term economic consequences – in the form of rising inflation, subdued growth, increasing inequality, and greater macro-fiscal instability – are affecting the cost of living on the continent.
Dr. Bawumia also commended the boards of governors for their foresight in endorsing the broad framework of the bank’s strategic outlook for the next 10 years (2023 – 2032) to build “a prosperous Africa, based on inclusive growth and sustainable development.”
Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta, who is the immediate past Chairman of the board of governors of the African Development Bank (AfDB), said Africa needed a unified voice and should table initiatives such as the introduction of carbon-credits to ensure that Africa can build forward better, while avoiding being derailed by the fall-outs from events across the world.
“As we advance, we must continue to have a unified voice and table initiatives (such as the introduction of carbon credits) to ensure Africa can build forward better, smarter, and boldly while avoiding being locked into stranded assets and having our progress derailed by the fall-outs from events that occur hundreds of miles away,” the Minister stressed.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri