The African Development Bank (AfDB) has announced commitments of $20 million for Nigerian SMEs with FSDH and $148 million in Egypt with CIB. In both cases, the goal is to boost trade practices among small and medium-sized enterprises in Africa.
The AfDB recently engaged in financing to strengthen commercial activities conducted by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria and Egypt. In Nigeria, the institution is providing a $20 million trade finance facility with First Securities Discount House Limited (FSDH), including $5 million in guarantees. In the second case, it granted a financial package of $148 million to the Commercial International Bank of Egypt (CIB).
These commitments are presented as a response to the challenges facing trade financing in Africa. The AfDB estimates the annual trade financing deficit on the continent at $81 billion, with a specific gap of $7 billion for Nigeria. In Egypt, the situation is exacerbated by a shortage of foreign exchange, due to complex macroeconomic and geopolitical factors.
In Nigeria, a country with nearly 220 million inhabitants, limited access to financing hampers the potential of SMEs, which are essential to the country’s economic fabric. The AfDB’s intervention aims to provide the necessary resources for the expansion of business activities. In Egypt, the financing from CIB specifically targets the foreign exchange needs of SMEs, crucial for their participation in international trade.
As a triple-A-rated institution, the AfDB plays a catalytic role in trade financing in Africa. Its ability to raise funds for international operations is a significant asset. These interventions in Nigeria and Egypt demonstrate the AfDB’s commitment to supporting SMEs, driving growth and economic diversification, thereby contributing to the stability and economic prosperity of Africa.
Source: Ecofin Agency