Photovoltaic rural electrification and housing construction for poor families in Morocco, new metro line in Hanoi, access to electricity in Mozambique, extension of Cape Town port in South Africa, environment program in Mauritius: AFD pledges some 500 million euros for development at its 5 November 2009 Board Meeting.
Morocco: rural electrification
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 30 million euro loan to the National Electricity Board (ONE) for the fifth phase of its Global Rural Electrification Program (PERG 5).
One of the Moroccan government’s priorities is to improve living conditions in rural areas and reduce urban/rural disparities. In 1995, the authorities launched an ambitious program that aims to provide nationwide access to electricity by 2010. PERG is being implemented using two electrification methods: connection to the interconnected network for the majority of villages, and decentralized rural electrification – mainly using photovoltaic equipment – for areas that are far from the network. AFD has been supporting ONE for the PERG since it began and the Program has met with unquestionable success. 449 villages (17 800 homes) will be equipped thanks to this new financing.
Morocco: housing construction
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 50 million euro loan to the Al Omrane Holding Company (HAO) for a subsidized home ownership program.
Morocco remains a highly rural country and struggles to control the fast pace of urbanization. Housing supply cannot meet demand and every year a new urban population of some 500 000 inhabitants further overcrowds neighbourhoods with unsafe housing and urban slums. The government has set the target of doubling the housing production rate for poor and disadvantaged families by creating new neighbourhoods and cities. It has called on the public group HAO to start works for 600 000 new housing units and 400 000 urban restructuring units for the period 2008-2012.
AFD’s financing will allow a social and environmental approach to be included in the program and will help create subsidized homeownership housing for poor and low-income families.
Morocco: support for the Health Program
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 35 million euro loan to the Kingdom of Morocco for its Program to Regionalize, Devolve and Strengthen Primary Healthcare.
Despite notable strides, Morocco’s health indicators remain poor, particularly in terms of maternal and infant health, and there are considerable regional and socioeconomic disparities. The health system is mainly public and lacks efficiency: centralized management, resources mainly earmarked for the hospital system, health centers and outpatient care neglected… The Ministry of Health has launched ambitious reforms which include devolution, compulsory medical insurance, and a medical insurance system for the economically disadvantaged. These improvements have been set out in the 2008-2012 Health Action Plan.
AFD is supporting the health sector in Morocco in the framework of the Program, which concerns three disadvantaged regions and targets investment and training for staff in basic healthcare centers. This new financing extends this support to primary healthcare.
Vietnam: new metro line in Hanoi
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 30 million euro loan to the Republic of Vietnam for the creation of infrastructure for the Nhon – Hanoi Central Station metro line. This loan will complete the 80.5M euros of financing that AFD allocated for this project in December 2006.
Hanoi is nowadays a bustling city and suffers acutely from transport. Urban growth (4.6% a year) has pushed up demand for transport, and economic growth (8 to 9% a year) has led to a rise in the motorization rate. There was a thirtyfold increase in car traffic between 1995 and 2005 and a sixfold rise in moped traffic. The Vietnamese authorities have reviewed their master plan as a result of the worsening traffic crisis and plan to build two new metro lines by 2015 and extend the Nhon – Hanoi Central Station line by 2020. The capacity of this line will be doubled and it will be upgraded from light metro to metro standard with wide trains of up to 100 m long. By 2030 it will transport some 200 million passengers a year.
Mozambique: development of the electricity sector
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 20 million euro loan to the Republic of Mozambique to develop and extend electricity supply in the Provinces of Maputo and Cabo Delgado.
Mozambique’s energy situation is characterized by a low level of access to modern services (12% electrification rate in 2008 and use of firewood at over 80%) and sizeable local energy resources (notably 12 000 MW of largely unexploited hydropower potential). The public company Electricidade de Moçambique (EDM) is managing a huge investment program to develop this sector. The project is part of an extensive program – the National Energy sector Development and Access Program (NEDAP) – which was designed by the government and World Bank and aims to reduce poverty.
The project combines considerable economic benefits with environmental benefits that stem from the reduction in charcoal or fossil fuel consumption and, above all, with highly positive social effects (between 200 000 and 300 000 people will benefit from electricity). Technical assistance will also be provided to EDM to help it better define its strategy and investments and to increase the security of its supply.
South Africa: extension of Cape Town Port
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 200 million euro loan to TRANSNET for the extension of the Cape Town Port container terminal.
The public company TRANSNET manages all of South Africa’s rail freight transport, commercial ports and pipelines. It is implementing a sizeable 7.3 billion euro investment program in order to meet growing demand in terms of ship size and volumes of containerized merchandise. This financing will help support the Cape Region’s international trade, particularly the agricultural export industry.
Mauritius: “Mauritius: Sustainable Island” program
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 125 million euro loan to the Republic of Mauritius to support its “Mauritius: Sustainable Island” (MSI) environment program.
Mauritius Island is a small insular State and is consequently particularly vulnerable to environmental degradation and climate change effects. The authorities launched the MSI program in 2008 in order to build synergies and coordination between the various sectoral policies, and promote a better integration of environmental issues into these policies.
This initial operation includes two phases (€60M in 2009 and €65M in 2010) and will focus on energy management (renewable energy and energy efficiency). It will help support employment, boost the economy and combat climate change. This program will give a positive signal for international negotiations seeking examples of constructive and shared efforts. Finally, it will promote an exchange of best practices with Reunion Island which has defined a program similar to MSI – the GERRI 2030 project (“Grenelle Environment on Reunion, Succeeding through Innovation”).
Agence Française de Développement (AFD), a public establishment, has been combating poverty and promoting development in South countries and Overseas France for over 60 years. AFD is active in the field in over 60 countries and Overseas France and finances and supports projects to improve living conditions for populations, boost economic growth and protect the planet: getting children into school, supporting farmers and small companies, providing water supply, preserving tropical forests, combating climate change… In 2008, AFD earmarked some 4.5 billion euros to finance operations in South countries and Overseas France. Thanks to this financing 7 million children were able to go to school and 4.4 million people gained access to water supply. Energy efficiency projects for the same year will save 3.3 million tons of CO2 annually. www.afd.fr
Board of Directors meeting the 17 December 2009 : AFD deploys nearly one billion euros for emerging and developing countries.
Education and health in Benin, Congo, Togo, the Palestinian Territories and Santo Domingo, water in Burkina Faso and Comoros, vocational training in Gabon, urban management in Ghana, Kenya, and the Philippines: AFD deploys almost a billion euros to support sustainable development at its 17 December 2009 Board of Directors meeting.
Benin: developing the education sector
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 9 million euro grant to the Republic of Benin to support its Ten-Year Education Sector Development Plan (PDDSE).
Although the primary completion rate for pupils remains unsatisfactory in Benin, it is one of the rare countries in the sub-region to be on track to getting all its children into school. The country also has to face a rapid deterioration in schooling conditions in intermediate and higher education where facilities have not kept pace with the sharp growth in the number of pupils.
Donors supported the first phase of the PDDSE, which focused on developing the primary sector, and have been implementing their financing via a single basket fund to support the PDDSE since 2008. This fund will be mobilized to develop post-primary education. In this framework, AFD’s financing will be earmarked for expenditure relating to secondary schools (construction of schools, purchase of textbooks and redefinition of teaching methods) and will contribute to the development of a more balanced education system.
Burkina Faso: water and sanitation in rural areas
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 7 million euro grant to the Republic of Burkina Faso to support its National Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Program (PN-AEPA) in rural areas.
The PN-AEPA sets out Burkina Faso’s vision and approach to achieving the Millennium Development Goals, particularly Goal n° 7 which aims to halve the number of people without satisfactory access to drinking water and sanitation by 2015.
The project includes two components: one for capacity building, particularly for municipalities, and one for investment (water supply, equipped boreholes, family and market latrines). It will provide 100 000 people with access to an improved water source and 200 000 people will benefit from a sanitation system. This will also have positive impacts on the economy and the environment.
Burkina Faso: electricity connections in secondary centers
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 32 million euro loan to Burkina Faso’s electricity authority, SONABEL, to consolidate its medium-voltage electricity distribution network.
The project aims to allow SONABEL – the public company in charge of the sector – to reduce its operating costs. This involves connecting three secondary centers in the north of the country (Ouahigouya, Dori and Djibo), which are currently supplied by remote, costly and polluting thermal power plants, to the main network, as well as towns located on the route of these lines that currently do not have an electricity supply (i.e. a total of 12 towns with a total population of 240 000 inhabitants). Support for the connection subsidy policy will also increase the access of private individuals to energy (20 000 additional subscribers). Finally, the program will develop a project for a solar photovoltaic power plant.
Comoros: drinking water supply in Anjouan
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 4.2 million euro grant to the Union of the Comoros to provide the Sima peninsula in Anjouan with a drinking water supply.
The many weaknesses of Comoros’ water sector cause considerable deficiencies in network operating which make populations even more vulnerable to risks of disease and mortality. The operation will mainly concern drinking water supply for 16 600 inhabitants on Sima peninsula in Anjouan, with the implementation of a full public drinking water service that is sustainable and accessible to all. Small emergency investments will also be made on the Djandro plateau in Moheli. This project will have direct and indirect impacts on villagers, as well as favorable social, environmental and institutional impacts.
Comoros: supporting the Development Bank of the Comoros
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 3 million euro grant (800 000 euros to the Development Bank of the Comoros (DBC) and 2.2 million euros to the Union of the Comoros) to relaunch the activities of DBC.
DBC’s capital is equally divided between the Comorian State on the one side, and the Central Bank of the Comoros, EIB and AFD on the other side. The bank’s mission is to contribute to the country’s economic development via medium-term financing for production activities and private equity investments. Since 2007, it has been conducting mesofinance operations, commercial transactions and short-term operations. This new financing aims to allow DBC to pursue its economic recovery, go beyond its basic mission as a traditional development bank, and eventually make its privatization possible.
Congo: health sector support
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 6 million euro grant to the Republic of Congo for a project to strengthen human resources in the health sector.
According to the 2005 UNDP report, Congo has extremely poor health indicators, despite a high rate of use of health services. Deficient healthcare service quality is partly responsible for this situation. The project aims to implement effective human resource management in the sector and completely reform initial training for paramedical professionals. It will have a sustainable impact on health indicators.
Gabon: support for vocational training
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 12 million euro loan to the Republic of Gabon to improve its range of vocational training and tailor it to demand from the productive sector.
With nine vocational training and development centers (VTDCs), Gabon’s current vocational training system cannot satisfactorily meet business needs for qualified and operational staff. This sector must be stimulated by providing support to a training system that meets both these needs and targets for the social integration of young people through employment. The project includes three components: the creation of sectoral vocational training and development centers (SVTDCs), support for the upgrading of existing VTDCs, and support for the management of various training entities. It will also promote the development of the private sector in Gabon.
Guinea-Bissau: global budget support
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 3 million euro grant to the Republic of Guinea-Bissau, half earmarked for expenditure in the health and education sectors, and half to stabilize finances given the weight of bank debt on public finances.
In a difficult political context, the new President, Malam Bacai Sanhá, who was sworn in on 8 September 2009, expressed his will to enter into a period of stability and to achieve this by working with all the country’s forces and the international community.
A return to sustainable growth would only seem possible if the country is in a position to implement structural reforms in the medium term. This is essential for making the macroeconomic framework sustainable and for economic development.
In agreement with the local authorities, AFD is allocating a 3 million euro grant which will support the implementation of the program supported by the IMF’s Emergency Post-Conflict Assistance (EPCA). This will also provide a springboard for the negotiation of a future medium-term program.
Haiti: increasing and guaranteeing food security
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 4.36 million euro grant – from funds delegated by the European Union – to the Republic of Haiti to increase and secure food production, with a priority focus on the irrigation sector.
This project follows on from the 5.5 million euro Irrigation Sector Program financed by AFD, which supported the construction and rehabilitation of irrigated areas, as well as the Water Users’ Association.
Water management for irrigated areas and the small reservoirs on the Central Plateau help improve the regularity of flows and infiltration, and limit flood flows and the damage they can cause. Moreover, thanks to this water management it will be possible to develop new economic activities on the Central Plateau and create new economic activities for all the rural families in these regions.
Kenya: integrated urban management program in Kisumu
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 40 million euro loan to the Republic of Kenya for a pilot integrated urban management program in Kisumu (Kisumu Urban Project).
Kenya’s urban population represents 35% of the country’s population and rises by 4% every year. This sharp growth is uncontrolled and has considerable negative effects (pollution, segregation, informal neighborhoods, social tensions…). Kisumu is the country’s third largest city and is located at the crossroads of the main trade flows and main transport links. The city remains weakened by a high level of debt, despite catching up measures, and its human resources are insufficient and poorly qualified. One of the major challenges for the country is to integrate these different areas and improve living conditions for their inhabitants. The project includes five components: capacity building for the municipality, waste management, the rehabilitation of informal neighborhoods, market equipment and public infrastructure and equipment.
Kenya: rural track improvement and maintenance
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 40 million euro loan to the Republic of Kenya for the improvement and maintenance of a rural road network in the Central Province.
Road transportation, particularly rural roads, acts as a catalyst for economic development. Kenya has adopted a series of laws to finance the rehabilitation and permanent maintenance of rural roads. In this framework, AFD financed an initial project to rehabilitate 1 010 km and permanently maintain 2 420 km of rural tracks in two regions. This generated 600 000 days of work, of which 24% benefit women.
This second project aims to improve the rural road network in six regions (repair 1 083 km of deteriorated roads, reinforce 106 km of difficult roads and permanently maintain 5 057 km of roads in good condition), and strengthen the road management and maintenance system.
Madagascar: securing the Andralanitra dump
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 2 million euro grant to the Republic of Madagascar to secure the Andralanitra dump in Antananarivo.
The Andralanitra dump is the capital city’s main waste storage site. It began receiving the first waste deposits in 1996 and today takes in the entire amount of collected waste, i.e. an average of 450 tons a day. The dump is neither developed nor controlled. It presents considerable health risks and is a major nuisance for the neighborhood. There is also a social issue as many households earn part or all of their living by informally exploiting its waste. The dump will be closed in the next four to six years and another non-polluting landfill is to be built.
The Urban Community of Antananarivo has decided to take advantage of this transition period to put an end to the uncontrolled expansion of the dump and improve the way it is operated. A road will be built outside the dump and will reduce health risks caused by inhabitants crossing the dump. This project will also have an environmental impact on the whole city. Finally, families that currently earn their living from the dump will be offered adaptation measures which will limit the social consequences of the site being closed in the medium term.
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 1.425 million euro grant – from funds delegated by the European Union – to the Republic of Mali for a literacy project for cotton producers.
This project is the “literacy” component of a project financed by AFD that aims to help improve governance and operating systems in cotton areas. It follows on from the program to help structure producers and implement the institutional reform in the cotton sector which is also supported by AFD.
The aim of this financing is to set up a literacy program for members of the cooperative network of Mali’s cotton producers (260 trainers will be trained and will in turn train 7 800 people), in order to improve the management of cooperatives and their unions.
Mediterranean: geographical extension of the ARIZ mechanism
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of 45 million euros backed by its share capital to develop ARIZ guarantee activities in the Mediterranean countries where AFD operates.
Banks in the Mediterranean will be offered the entire range of ARIZ tools that are already available in Sub-Saharan Africa and give small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) easier access to credit. ARIZ’s activity will probably be mainly developed via guarantees for medium to long-term loans (individual guarantees and portfolio guarantees) and the guarantee for resources provided by banks to mature MFIs in the form of credit lines.
In order to achieve its commitment targets, ARIZ will mainly be implemented via banking group networks that are already users in Sub-Saharan Africa. This will also make it possible to take into account the specificities of the region by seeking complementarities with national guarantee funds, segments and loan amounts that are not covered by the existing range of guarantees.
Mozambique: natural gas production
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 50 million US dollar loan to Comapanhia mocambicana de hidrocarbonetos (CMH) to raise the exploitation capacities of the Pande and Temane gas fields.
CMH was set up by the Mozambican public company Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (ENH) to allow the Mozambican State to participate in a project to exploit the Pande and Temane gas fields in Inhambane Province to the northeast of Maputo. The aim is to increase the financial resources of the State and support Mozambique’s participation in the program to exploit its natural resources in which the South African partner SASOL is playing a major role. The project will raise the current capacities to produce and treat gas extracted from these gas fields by over 50%.
Senegal: rice production
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of two grants totalling 10 million euros to the Republic of Senegal for a Program to Promote a Rice Partnership in the River Senegal Delta (3PRD).
In April 2008, the Senegalese government, after liberalizing the rice sector and implementing the reforms required for investments, launched the Great Agricultural Offensive for Food and Abundance (GOANA), which aims to guarantee the country’s food security. In terms of rice, GOANA introduces the National Program for Rice Self-sufficiency (PNAR), which has a 2012 production target of a million tons of paddy rice. From this perspective, the 3PRD will raise agricultural productivity by creating public water infrastructure and then developing 2 500 ha of new irrigatable land via private investors. It will also help improve financing conditions for agricultural investments and access to bank loans. Finally, it will support the organization of rice sector players. White rice production is expected to increase by 20 000 tons a year.
Senegal: urban development program in Dakar
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 30 million euro loan to the Republic of Senegal to participate in financing an urban development and highway program in Dakar. AFD’s total financial contribution stands at 60 million euros, in the form of two 30 million euro loans. The first was allocated in May 2009.
This urban development program aims to contribute to economic growth in the region and Senegal by opening up the capital and facilitating exchanges with the rest of the country. In addition to improving road traffic for the inhabitants of Greater Dakar, the project will develop a new neighborhood, restructure irregular neighborhoods and initiate a reorganization process for the waste industry.
Togo: strengthening the health sector
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of an 8 million euro grant to the Republic of Togo to improve its health system and the quality of healthcare.
With per capita income at USD380, Togo is one of the poorest countries in the world and the health status of the population remains precarious. The project will support the management and development of human resources in the health/pharmacy sectors and strengthen Ministry of Health departments.
Egypt: support for SME financing
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 30 million euro loan to the National Bank of Egypt (NBE) to finance the development of its SME lending activities.
Egypt counts 2.4 million micro, small and medium-sized enterprises which account for over two-thirds of employment. The State aims to make NBE – Egypt’s biggest commercial bank of which it holds 100% of the capital – the major instrument for its policy to support the development of SMEs.
This support will finance the bank’s medium and long-term SME lending activities and will be coupled with criteria in order to target small businesses as a priority. Indeed, they are currently the least served by the banking sector, particularly in rural areas and in the sectors of health and education. The bank will implement a program to strengthen its in-house skills in this sector, as well as a support program for SMEs. This program may benefit 500 SMEs.
Palestinian Territories: drug storage and management
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 5.8 million euro grant to the Palestinian Authority to support its pharmaceutical sector.
The main areas defined in the Palestinian Authority’s Reform and Development Plan for the health sector are to increase healthcare supply and improve its quality. The implementation of a drug policy and the construction of a central pharmacy meet this dual objective. Thanks to this project, the Ministry of Health will have a tool for drug storage and management in line with best international practices and the drug policy will be improved. Health expenditure will also be reduced, the use of drugs will be rationalized and healthcare quality will be improved.
Lao PDR: developing northern mountainous areas
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 2 million euro grant to the Lao People’s Democratic Republic to support its rural development program in the northern mountainous areas. This project will also benefit from a 7.41 million euro grant from the European Union and a 1.463 million euro grant from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) for which the implementation will be delegated to AFD.
The districts in the provinces of Luang Prabang, Phongsaly and Huaphanh, located near the Cordillera Annamitic, subsist almost exclusively from agricultural exploitation and are among the poorest in the country. The program aims to increase and secure agricultural income for these populations and improve rural development policies and operations. It will help secure agricultural income for these populations and will also increase their participation in local development. The project will also provide technical advice to producers and will support their organization and production sectors.
Dominican Republic: cardiovascular center and social program
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of an 18 million US dollar loan to the CEDIMAT Foundation for the construction and equipment of a cardiovascular center and the implementation of a social program.
Cardiovascular diseases have become the first cause of mortality in the Dominican Republic and account for 25% of deaths. Healthcare services are insufficient, particularly in this area of specialization. The project will create a high-level referral center for medicine and cardiovascular surgery. The center will provide widespread access to a full range of services in this specialization, as well as screening and treatment for these pathologies. It will be implemented by the Centro de diagnostico y medecina avanzada y de conferencias medicas y telemedicina (CEDIMAT) Foundation.
South Africa: drinking water supply in Durban
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 70 million euro loan to the Trans-Caledon Tunnel Authority (TCTA) for a water transfer project to supply the city of Durban.
The Mooi Mgeni Transfer Scheme phase 2 (MMTS-2), implemented by the public entity TCTA, aims to increase the capacity of the Mgeni system, which supplies the city of Durban and its region, by 15%. The project involves constructing a dam on the River Mooi, creating a 140 million m3 reservoir, and a pumping station and pipeline to transfer part of the water to the Mgeni system. The works will last two years and the filling phase for the dam is scheduled for June 2012. The project is part of a series of measures to provide 5.5 million people with access to water – compared to 4.9 million today – by 2025. It will help reduce the risk of shortages and the associated economic and social consequences in case of long-term drought.
Morocco: transporting phosphates by mineral duct
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 240 million euro loan to the Cherifian Phosphate Office (OCP) for the construction of a mineral duct system to transport phosphates by waterway.
Morocco possesses proved reserves equivalent to over half of global reserves and is today the world’s third biggest producer of crude phosphate. It has also been the world’s biggest exporter since 1997. OCP – Morocco’s biggest company – plays an important social and economic role in the regions where the mining and industrial centers are located, and makes a sizeable contribution to the national economy. Phosphates are transported from the Khourigba mines to Jorf Lasfar and Casablanca by rail. The mineral duct will make it possible to transport the entire production by waterway. This will make OCP more competitive and will avoid 712 000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions every year.
Philippines: financing local authorities
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 150 million euro loan (or its equivalent in US dollars) to the Republic of the Philippines to support its Local Government Financing and Budget Reform (LGFBR) Program.
The Philippine archipelago is made up of over 7 000 islands which include over 40 000 local authorities. The government is implementing the Local Government Financing and Budget Program (LGFBR) which aims to strengthen the financing of these local authorities and promote the implementation of their environmental, health and social competences.
The budget support provided by AFD in the framework of this program will be earmarked to strengthen the capacities of the local authorities so that they are able to exercise their environmental and social competences. It will be accompanied by technical assistance for a sample of local authorities in order to prepare the investment programs, particularly for the environment sector.
Colombia: investing in territorial authorities
The AFD Board of Directors meeting approved the allocation of a 100 million euro loan to the Republic of Colombia to support investments by territorial authorities.
Decentralization in Colombia now aims to sustainably develop territories and improve living conditions for populations by strengthening the provision of local public services. AFD’s financing will allow the State to pursue its policy to strengthen decentralization. It will contribute to the sustainable development of cities and will have economic and social impacts (access for populations to basic services), environmental impacts (“clean” infrastructure, protection of the du Rio Magdalena) and institutional impacts.
Agence Française de Développement (AFD), a public establishment with a mission defined by the French Government, has been combating poverty and promoting development in South countries and Overseas France for over 60 years. AFD is active in the field in over 60 countries and Overseas France and finances and supports projects to improve living conditions for populations, boost economic growth and protect the planet: getting children into school, supporting farmers and small companies, providing water supply, preserving tropical forests, combating climate change… In 2008, AFD earmarked some 4.5 billion euros to finance operations in South countries and Overseas France. Thanks to this financing 7 million children were able to go to school and 4.4 million people gained access to water supply. Energy efficiency projects for the same year will save 3.3 million tons of CO2 annually. www.afd.fr
Société Générale and Agence Française de Développement join forces to give entrepreneurs in Africa and the Mediterranean easier access to financing
In order to speed up the process to finance entrepreneurs in Africa and the Mediterranean, Frédéric Oudéa, Chairman and CEO of Société Générale, signed an agreement today with Jean Michel Severino, Director General of Agence Française de Développement, in the presence of Jean Louis Mattei, Director of International Retail Banking at Société Générale Group.
This agreement concerns subsidiaries in Africa and the Mediterranean, but the geographical area may be extended. Under the agreement, Agence Française de Développement (AFD) will guarantee up to 50% of the risk borne by Société Générale in its activity to finance entrepreneurs, within an overall package of some EUR50M. The loans targeted are investment loans with unit amounts below EUR300 000. The guarantee mechanism is simple and rapid.
Access to financing for entrepreneurs is a major issue for economic growth and the creation of sustainable employment. Agence Française de Développement Group promotes and supports investment in small and medium-sized enterprises in Africa and the countries where it operates via several tools designed for local financial systems.
Société Générale shares the same objective in France and the 36 countries where the bank has retail banking activities. These subsidiaries play a key role in financing the economy and the private sector in order to give economic players easier access to credit, including professionals and small and medium-sized enterprises.
Commenting on the signing of this agreement, Jean Michel Severino declared: “By offering to share the risk of unpaid loans with banks, AFD aims to contribute to widely boosting a range of financing tailored to the needs of small enterprises. This partnership with Société Générale and its network in 17 countries marks an important step towards reaching this target in Africa and the Mediterranean”.
For Jean Louis Mattei: “Our subsidiaries make a special effort to support entrepreneurs. Many have adapted their commercial and loan allocation systems in order to meet the needs of these entrepreneurs and better apprehend the risk. This partnership with Agence Française de Développement will boost our loan production and allow us to raise our capacity in this client segment more swiftly”.
Société Générale is one of the leading financial services groups in the euro zone. With 163,000 staff throughout the world, its business activities focus on three major activities:
- Retail & Financial Services Networks with over 30 million private customers in France and internationally.
- Asset & Services management on behalf of investors, the Group being a leading bank in the euro zone with 3 073 billion euros of assets held and 348 billion euros of assets managed at the end of September 2009.
- Finance and investment bank: Société Générale Corporate & Investment Banking supports its clients in a number of sectors and provides tailored solutions, thanks to its global experience in investment banking, financing and market activities.
Société Générale is listed on the international sustainable development indices: FTSE4good and ASPI.
Agence Française de Développement
Agence Française de Développement (AFD) has been combating poverty and promoting development in South countries and Overseas France for over 60 years and implements the development policy defined by the French Government.
AFD is active in the field in over 50 countries and finances and supports projects to improve living conditions for populations, boost economic growth and protect the planet: getting children into school, supporting farmers and small companies, providing water supply, preserving tropical forests, combating climate change…
In 2008, AFD earmarked some 4.5 billion euros to finance operations in South countries and Overseas France. Thanks to this financing 6.9 million children were able to go to school and 4.4 million people gained access to water supply. Energy efficiency projects for the same year will save 13.8 million tons of CO2 annually.
Anne-Sophie Morizot (Hopscotch)
Agence Française de Développement’s blog platform is celebrating its first anniversary by organizing an evening of exchanges and meetings on the topic of solidarity on the web.
Come and join us on Thursday 3 December from 5 to 8 p.m. at AFD!
For the past 12 months, Solidaires du monde (Citizens for Global Solidarity) has been helping bloggers from all over the world create their blogs and become proficient bloggers. These blogs are essential tools for disseminating and sharing ideas, opinions and actions in terms of solidarity. One year after it was launched by Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Solidaires du monde now gathers 380 blogs and has become a major space for solidarity on the web. This anniversary provides an opportunity to take stock of the blog platform one year on.
Solidaires du monde will be welcoming anyone who is interested in issues relating to solidarity and Internet on Thursday 3 December 2009 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Agence Française de Développement, Paris. In addition to celebrating the platform’s first anniversary, the event will also provide an opportunity to debate the topic of “New media and solidarity”.
The event will include a conference-debate on the topic “Internet: creator of new solidarities” gathering several experts who will be giving their views and shedding light on web 2.0 and solidarity. The debate will focus on key questions such as:
- How does web 2.0 promote solidarity actions?
- What point has the online community of solidarity players reached?
- How can blogs be effective tools for media coverage?
In addition to representatives from Solidaires du monde and bloggers from the platform, other speakers involved in solidarity on the web will be taking the floor including: Sarah Yvert from ASAH, Guillaume Desnoës from Aider Donner, Olivier Maurel from Danone Communities and Damien Roussat from Babyloan.
Side events will also be organized:
- during the conference the cartoonist Faujour will be drawing cartoons live which will be projected on a giant screen.
- the film « Qu’est-ce que la solidarité ? » (What is solidarity?) will be screened. This film, made by Solidaires du monde to mark the Solidays festival, shows various players from associations met during the festival who give their vision of solidarity.
- Solidaires du monde blogs will be shown on display boards, along with the winning photos from the Planète Jeunes / Solidaires du monde competition.
Bloggers who are unable to come will be able to make a virtual contribution to the event by sending their testimony in the form of a video, text or photo. This testimony may give a definition of solidarity, or an account of an experience or action in terms of solidarity, or an experience with Solidaires du monde.
Solidaires du monde: a leading voice for solidarity actions
Solidaires du monde is a platform of solidarity blogs that catalyze exchanges of experiences, opinions and testimonies. It gathers bloggers that express themselves either as private individuals or on behalf of an entity (associations, NGOs). Almost one blog out of five is from a French-speaking African country and gives testimonies about the action of local associations.
The Solidaires du monde blogs aim to give a voice to solidarity actions from all over the world. They are much more than a simple digital showcase for actions, projects or often lone reflection – by having a blog on the platform it is possible to open its content to the community of web users. The blogs can consequently help opinions to evolve and can even lead to meetings.
Since its launch on 18 November 2008, 380 blogs have been created on the platform, i.e. just over one new blog every day. Solidaires du monde has roughly 17 500 single visitors a month and at 1 November this year over 70 000 web users – including almost a quarter from African countries – had visited the platform and its blogs!
Looking back at a year full of partnerships with major solidarity players
This year has been marked by partnerships with a number of solidarity players. Through these various meetings, exchanges and testimonies, the Solidaires du monde team aimed to stimulate reflection about what solidarity means to each and every one of us.
In June 2009, Solidaires du Monde partnered with Solidarité Sida during the Solidays festival. For two weeks, Solidaires du monde met and followed 20 associations that fight against HIV in Africa, the Indian Ocean and Southeast Asia. The blog created to mark the event « A la rencontre des associations Solidays », gave them web coverage and allowed them to reach the community of web users and Solidaires du monde bloggers. This event also helped them to perfect their computer skills by training them in web tools and blogging. The film « Qu’est-ce que la solidarité ? » was made to mark the occasion.
This summer Solidaires du monde partnered with Planète Jeunes, the leading paper magazine for 15-25 year olds in many French-speaking African countries. They launched a photo competition together for readers of the magazine who had to express their vision of solidarity via a photo. Solidaires du monde took part in the competition by providing a space for web users to vote for their favorite photo among the hundreds that were received. The photos are available online on the blog dedicated to the competition. Thanks to this partnership, the Solidaires du monde platform was able to highlight new visions of solidarity via images and to further reflection about what solidarity actually means.
The Solidaires du monde team’s latest partnership has been with Babyloan, the first French website for solidarity microloans launched in November 2008. Babyloan organized its second meetings on 7 and 8 November 2009 in order to launch a debate on the new forms of solidarity coming into being thanks to the web. A Solidaires du monde blog was specially created to mark the event. It shows videos of the conferences, meetings with web solidarity players and provides information on microloans as well as new definitions of solidarity from the Babyloan team.
To discover Solidaires du monde:
- On France 2, from Monday to Sunday, late evening at about 10.30 p.m.
- On France 5 every weekend, on Saturdays at 5.40 p.m. before the program Cinémas, and on Sundays at 5.40 p.m. before the program C Politique.
A series presented by France Télévisions Publicité