EIB announces one billion-dollar boost for African female entrepreneurs

Date:

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the lending arm of the European Union, has announced a $1.1 billion lending programme to help women entrepreneurs in Africa.

EIB Vice President, Ambroise Fayolle, who announced the initiative, said the bank had also signed three further agreements to boost sustainable development on the continent.

Dubbed SheInvest, the EIB expects the gender-lending initiative to allow women to play a more active role in economies.

“This initiative aims to promote female entrepreneurship,” said Fayolle, noting that female entrepreneurs will also gain business skills from the programme.

He explained that the financing will promote gender investment related to climate change and is part of broader European engagement to provide targeted support for new investment that supports increased female economic participation in Africa.

The announcement was made at the Africa Investment Forum in Johannesburg, where hundreds of investors, development partners and wealth funds have gathered from 11 to 13 November for the continent’s premier marketplace.

The EIB has supported investment in Africa for more than 50 years. Last year, it provided a record €3.3 billion to African countries, with more than half the funds being pumped into the private sector.

The Africa Investment Forum inaugural edition was launched in 2018 in partnership with Africa50, Afrexim Bank, the Trade Development Bank, the Development Bank of South Africa, the Islamic Development Bank, the Africa Finance Corporation, the European Investment Bank.

The 2019 Forum is being held in Johannesburg, South Africa.

GNA

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