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Afreximbank commits $2bn in African food security initiative

Farmers work the land outside Lichtenburg, South Africa, in this file picture. Photo: Reuters

Farmers work the land outside Lichtenburg, South Africa, in this file picture. Photo: Reuters

Published Nov 15, 2023


The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has entered into a framework agreement with a commitment of $2 billion (R38bn) for the Export Agriculture for Food Security (ExAFS) Initiative.

Afreximbank, in a deal with ARISE Integrated Industrial Platforms (ARISE IIP) and the governments of Chad, Malawi, Zimbabwe and Egypt, aims to improve food security in Africa, and seeks to boost production, processing and intra-African trade in agricultural products and provide African farmers and agribusinesses with opportunities to access larger markets across the continent

At a ceremony on the fifth day of the third Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF2023), Professor Benedict Oramah, president and chairperson of the board of directors of Afreximbank, signed the framework agreement on behalf of the bank.

The initiative is intended to help address food insecurity in Africa, which includes a near 20% hunger rate, by reducing dependence on other regions for much-needed food commodities.

ExAFS aims to increase sales, lead to better prices and improve profitability for Africa’s agricultural value chain stakeholders.

It will leverage upon the establishment of agricultural transformation centres (ATCs) – under a public-private partnership model – in agricultural production zones to provide facilities for agricultural produce from farming communities to be collected, sorted, stored, and transported as raw material for processing or distribution. ATCs will also provide additional services to farmers, including micro finance, basic social services, cold storage facilities, extension services and training.