Bolaji Adebiyi in Accra, Ghana
Investors, who worry about the security of their investments in Africa, now have a reason to smile as African Export-Import Bank, Afreximbank, this morning in Accra, Ghana unveiled its finance insurance arm, Insurance Management Company, AfrexInsure.
Designed to de-risk large projects and the investment required to develop the infrastructure networks necessary for the development of trade and commerce across the continent, the new addition is targeted at boosting intra-African trade, which has been hampered by weak financial services.
“The introduction of more innovative solutions by adding insurance to our portfolio of banking products will help to reduce the
generational trade and infrastructure deficits and bring new impetus to the issue of low insurance penetration in Africa particularly where it is fundamental to the trade development mandate of the Bank,” Prof. Benedict Oramah, chairman of the Bank said at the unveiling that was one of the events heralding its 30th Annual General Meeting.
He said the introduction of insurance offerings would complement other initiatives of the Bank and advance the implementation of the AfCFTA, explaining that it would ensure a comprehensive offering of trade solutions that would be fully aligned with African development ambitions and ensure that insurance premiums and African capital is retained on the continent.
Contending that a robust African financial services industry remains imperative to ensure a buoyant economic ecosystem that will increasingly stimulate intra-and extra- African trade and growth, Oramah explained that tailored insurance and reinsurance products for Africa would have a significant influence on boosting African trade as it would enable businesses to pursue ambitious business strategies by lowering risk.
“By reducing the risk of transactions or investments, insurance can help drive forward business strategy for those engaged in intra-Africa trade as well as enable global partners to further their commercial interests and ambitions in Africa,” the Bank’s chairman noted.
Oramah lamented the hefty infrastructure deficits that continued to hamper African trade growth, assuring that in the context of the US$120 billion and US$100 billion annual trade and infrastructure financing gap respectively, adding insurance to the Group’s portfolio would help to ensure the availability of financing.
This year’s meeting of the Pan-African multilateral financial institution, mandated to finance and promote intra-and extra-African trade, tagged AAM2023, marks its 30th anniversary and features high-profile speakers and enticing meetings, seminars, and forums.