Kenya will be doubling its current shareholding investment in the pan-African infrastructure investment platform, Africa50, to Sh10 billion ($100 million), President Kenya has said.
The President was speaking at the Africa50’s third general shareholders meeting in Nairobi where said that the move to increase its investment was justified and the support for bankable projects was needed to drive Africa’s growth.
“The private sector must step up and help us close the infrastructure gap on the African continent. Public funding is limited, and there are competing priorities,” he said.
Akinwumi Adesina, chairman of the Africa50 board as well as the president of African Development Bank commended the commitment by Kenya in their investment in infrastructure development over the last five years.
According to data from AfDB, private sector infrastructure financing in Africa still remains low, averaging $6 billion per year. In addition, the continent’s infrastructure funding requirements stand at $170 billion a year, leaving a financial gap of between $68 billion – $108 billion.
“We need to act with speed and urgency. We must work smart to attract greater levels of investment financing for infrastructure development in Africa. Globally, there is approximately a $120 trillion pool of savings and private equity. Africa must creatively attract some of this into the continent,” said Mr Adesina.
Since its establishment three years ago, Africa50 has become a key player in driving infrastructure investments, with commercial rates of return in Africa. It has mobilized over $850 million in infrastructure investments and expects to mobilise up to $3 billion through its private sector window. Apart from Kenya, the organisation has other major investments in shareholding countries such as Egypt, Nigeria and Senegal.