The European Union (EU), through the European Commission, and the Organisation of African, Caribbean, and Pacific States (OACPS) has agreed to provide €60 million to the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) joint Boost Africa Initiative to support higher risk investment in Africa.
European Commission Director-General for International Partnerships Koen Doens said that the Boost Africa Initiative shows how Africa and the EU can work together to build a more prosperous future by mobilising younger generations.
“Young African entrepreneurial talent is thriving. Boost Africa is there to help them in two ways: supporting their business projects financially and also accompanying them in the difficult process from design to implementation,” Doens explained.
“We see opportunities in many different innovative sectors, from health to sustainable energy and digitalisation, many of them critical in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. Overall, this is a great example of our Team Europe approach; bringing in all EU forces and partnering with local institutions to make the biggest impact in Africa”, he added.
Secretary-General of the OACPS Georges Rebelo Pinto Chikoti stated that scaling up specialised financing is essential to grow business skills and drive innovation across Africa.
He noted that Boost Africa has contributed to improved financing and providing much needed hands-on support to future African business leaders over the recent years, adding that the new OACPS-EU contribution to the initiative seeks to enhance the competitiveness of our private sector at a time of unprecedented challenges as a result of the uncertainty generated by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The EIB’s Vice President, Ambroise Fayolle, said that the new finance support will scale up activity by specialist funds across the continent, unlock involvement by new investors, and allow new fund partners to participate.
“Together Team Europe and African partners are ensuring that Boost Africa makes an even bigger difference in the years ahead”, according to Fayolle.
Four years after its launch, Boost Africa has created jobs and unlocked economic growth across Africa and helped to transform access to entrepreneurial finance.
The initiative, created by the EIB and AfDB, is providing €300 million to support targeted financing, provide technical assistance, and share the best practices for tech start-up companies, nature conservation, agriculture innovation, and entrepreneurs across the continent.
Boost Africa provides equity investment to increase investment by venture capital, business angle, and seed funds across Africa, supported by technical assistance that provides business training and best practices being shared between established African entrepreneurs and emerging innovators.