Afreximbank Prioritises Food Security At Russia-African Economic And Humanitarian Forum

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News in brief: Afrexim Bank emphasised the importance of unrestricted trade between African member states and Russia to enhance food security and promote investment while supporting the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) at the 2nd Russia-Africa Economic and Humanitarian Forum.

African Export-Import (Afrexim) Bank, highlighted the significance of uninhibited trade flows between its African member states and Russia, as a means to ensure food security on the continent. It also promoted trade and investment while advancing the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, (AfCFTA).

The bank believes this is pivotal in addressing current global food security challenges that Africa is especially feeling.

Its disclosure came at the 2nd Russia-Africa Economic and Humanitarian Forum held in St. Petersburg from July 27 to 29, 2023.

Afreximank’s President and Chairman, Benedict Oramah, said that the financial institution is working with select partners to use the Africa Trade Exchange (ATEX) platform to facilitate seamless flow of goods and payments in any currencies that sellers and buyers choose in a transparent manner. The ATEX e-platform manages Africa’s demand for grains and fertilisers, partnering with the African Union Commission, the United Nations System and Russian partners.

Oramah revealed that the bank has placed an aggregate credit limit of $3 billion to support transactions in this regard. He added that the bank and the Russian Export Center are collaborating to promote trade and investments in other critical sectors.

The bank’s executive further stated that it will focus on activities that help integrate the African economy and advance the AfCFTA implementation.

Afreximbank and the Russian Export Centre’s partnership offer a portfolio of solutions to support investments in agriculture, industrial parks and critical infrastructure. It also supports African investors seeking to explore opportunities in Russia.

Trade flows between Africa and Russia reached almost $20 billion in the four years leading to 2021, as against about $10 billion it was until 2015. This number was achieved despite the COVID-19 pandemic and other significant global crises, bringing it closer to the target of $40 billion by 2026 that participants of the first Russia-Africa Economic Forum, in 2019, agreed to. It is expected that the trade flows could double over the next four years.

Joseph Akahome
Joseph Akahome
Joseph O Akahome (OJ) is a writer, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Literature from the University of Benin. He is an avid agriculturist, with a bias for poultry and an insatiable appetite for chicken wings. When he is neither reading nor researching, he likes to spend recreational time playing board games, or swimming in serene forested lakes.

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