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President Ruto Pushes for $25 Billion Refill of African Development Fund

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President William Ruto is advocating for a significant replenishment of the African Development Fund (ADF), highlighting the transformative impact of Fund-backed projects within Kenya.

The Fund, operating as the concessional window of the African Development Bank Group, has been instrumental in various developmental endeavors.

President Ruto reiterated his support during a high-level meeting with Dr Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank Group, held at State House, Nairobi.

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This meeting coincided with Mr Adesina’s visit to Kenya to evaluate preparations for the Bank Group’s 59th Annual Meetings, scheduled for May 27th to 31st.

Additionally, Mr Adesina engaged with media leaders at the AllAfrica Media Leaders’ summit Nairobi.

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In a recent address at the World Bank’s International Development Association meeting in Nairobi, President Ruto advocated for a substantial $25-billion 17th replenishment of the African Development Fund, which aids 37 low-income countries across Africa.

Notably, the ongoing 16th replenishment raised a historic $8.9 billion in December 2022 and is slated to conclude next year.

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President Ruto emphasized Kenya’s direct benefits from Fund-supported initiatives, such as the Last Mile Connectivity project, which has significantly expanded electricity access to over 10 million households.

Stressing the project’s positive impact on people’s lives, Ruto underscored the importance of continued investment to sustain momentum in developmental efforts.

“Kenyans know it is a government project, but they need to know it was financed by the African Development Fund,” President Ruto pointed out. “It is making a difference in people’s lives, and we want to invest more to add momentum.”

Moreover, discussions between the two leaders encompassed increased investments in critical sectors like agriculture, clean water provision, and climate change adaptation.

Mr Adesina reiterated the Bank’s commitment to collaborate with the Kenyan government, highlighting successful implementations of de-risking lending to agriculture in various countries.

He also shared insights on the African Development Fund’s Climate Action Window, dedicated to climate financing, aimed at mobilizing between $7 billion to $13 billion to support countries in emergency situations, climate adaptation, and reducing the risk of debt distress due to climate investments.

“We have used partial credit guarantees to support the issuance of $500 million Panda bond by Egypt. We also used this tool to de-risk a EUR 350 million sustainable development loan for Benin. We did the same for Côte d’Ivoire to support the mobilisation of EUR 533 million in financing for strategic environmental, social and governance projects,” said the Bank Group president.

The meeting concluded with Mr Adesina expressing gratitude to President Ruto and the Kenyan government for their commitment to hosting the Bank Group’s 59th Annual Meetings.

Accompanying Mr Adesina were various officials from the African Development Bank Group, including the Chief Economist and Vice President for Economic Governance and Knowledge Management, the Secretary General, Executive Director for Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Sudan, Somalia, Tanzania, and Uganda, and the East Africa Regional Director General, among others.

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Diana Mutheu
Diana Mutheu
Diana Mutheu is a Tech enthusiast, happy to delve deeper into the African tech space covering Social Media, AI, Startups, Telcos, Cryptocurrency, Big Data, Women in Tech and all matters Tech. Write to me @[email protected]

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