Southern Africa Regional Office

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Southern africa regional office AFD Group
AFD's activities in Southern Africa cover ten countries on the border of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, from Angola to Mozambique, including two landlocked countries in South Africa. Despite its disparities, Southern Africa has the highest GDP per capita in Africa and stable political systems. But it is also the most unequal region on the continent. AFD Group aims to encourage fair and sustainable transitions in the region while strengthening the link between Southern Africa and France.


Based in Johannesburg, AFD Group’s Southern Africa Regional Office covers South Africa, Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Despite its cultural, historical and economic disparities, Southern Africa has the highest GDP per capita on the African continent and rather stable political regimes. The region is a unique reservoir of biodiversity and has considerable natural resources that attract external human and financial capital. It is also open to international trade, with South Africa being a major hub for intra-African economic migration. However, inequalities in access to housing, land and employment are high, and the region remains the most unequal in Africa in terms of income. The acceleration of social transformations has become a necessity.

AFD Group supports the Southern African region in addressing common regional challenges (climate change, biodiversity, the fight against inequalities) and improving regional integration.

Meet the climate challenge and preserve biodiversity

As part of its 100% Paris Agreement commitment, AFD Group supports low-carbon and resilient development in the region. In this way, it supports the energy transition of Southern African countries by promoting the development of renewable energies and encouraging the reduction of fossil fuel consumption. 

In order to improve the resilience of populations, we are strengthening our actions in favor of the sustainable management of natural resources, in particular water and biodiversity.

Tackle inequalities and promote social cohesion

AFD Group supports local stakeholders in order to achieve more balanced territorial development that allows for better integration of disadvantaged populations and reduces inequalities by promoting access to housing, infrastructure and employment.

We work closely with three countries in the region (Angola, South Africa and Zimbabwe) to structure sustainable agri-food chains that create decent jobs in rural areas.

As part of its 100% social link commitment, AFD Group also wishes to develop its work in the fields of sport and culture. The aim is to mobilize young people and promote integration, gender equality and openness to the world.

Support regional integration and address cross-border issues

AFD Group seeks to facilitate regional integration for shared economic development, better management of natural resources and knowledge sharing between countries in the region. 

As the ten southern African countries are members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), AFD Group intends to develop a partnership with this regional economic community that strengthens the socio-economic, political and security cooperation of member states. We are also following the development of the African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD) to determine the most relevant areas for cooperation in Southern Africa.

Finally, we promote the development of regional corridors, mainly in the sectors of energy, trade, tourism, transport and communication, and environmental protection.

Support the private sector

AFD Group intends to continue supporting the private sector, which generates 70% of regional GDP. Through the initiatives of Choose Africa and Choose Africa Resilience, the Group will provide more financing solutions for African SMEs and French companies abroad.

It also contributes to the strengthening of financial markets, notably through the development of climate finance through its partnership with DBSA. This cooperation aims to strengthen the capacity of local banks to finance "green" or social impact projects (especially for women's empowerment) and to create a leverage effect for a more environmentally friendly private sector and to support employment



map Botswana
map Eswatini
map Lesotho
map Malawi
map Zimbabwe


projects funded in 6 years
billion euros committed between 2015 and 2020
of AFD Group activities



Water works in Zambia’s Copperbelt Province

Water works in Zambia’s Copperbelt Province
Jun 2022

Up to the Tusk | Episode 1

podcast Up to the Tusk
May 2022
Institutional document

AFD Group and Europe in Southern Africa

AFD Group and Europe in Southern Africa
Feb 2022

Supporting a sustainable and resilient development model in Namibia

Supporting a sustainable and resilient development model in Namibia
Feb 2022
Research document

What role for social policies in the framework of the just transition in South Africa?

AFD Research Papers coordinated by Anda David (AFD) and Antoine Godin (AFD)
Feb 2022
Institutional document

AFD and Namibia

AFD and Namibia, development projects
Oct 2021
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