Africa investor (Ai) today convened the 4th African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum COVID-19 Roundtable, an exclusive Forum of the continent’s most influential Chairmen, CEO’s and CIO’s of African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Funds, to discuss the role and response of African institutional investors in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic across Africa.
The Forum was Co-Chaired by Hubert Danso, CEO and Chairman Africa investor Group (Ai), Chairman, African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum and Uche Orji, CEO of the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority.
The focus of the Roundtable, built on the Forum’s commitment and stated objective to support the implementation of the much anticipated $3.2 trillion African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
Discussion leaders shared their high-level insights on Innovative Institutional Investor Partnerships and opportunities for African pension and sovereign wealth funds, to support commercially viable, trade, private credit and ESG compliant and climate friendly, industrial infrastructure investment transactions, that support the implementation of the AfCFTA and enhance Africa’s global trade competitiveness post COVID-19.
The Roundtable facilitated in-depth discussions on innovative private credit solutions that align with African pension and sovereign wealth funds mandates and at the same time assist African Trade Banks, whose lending capacity and balance sheets have been impacted by COVID-19. Discussion leaders presented a new post COVID-19 Partnership Model, where African and global institutional investors could achieve competitive risk-adjusted returns, on the back of transactions structured by African Trade Banks and guaranteed by Export Credit Agencies (ECA’s).
It was agreed that this ECA Backed Loan Partnership Model with African Institutional Investors, (which is already a well established investable instrument for pension funds and insurance companies in Europe), represents a compelling ESG compliant investment solution, to facilitate and stimulate intra-African and global trade flows in support of the AfCFTA and the African Union’s 5% Infrastructure Investment Agenda in a post COVID-19 economy.
Roundtable discussion leaders included Hubert Danso, CEO and Chairman, Africa investor/AU CBN, Chairman, African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum, Lord Jim O’Neil, Former Chairman, Goldman Sachs Asset Management & Commercial Secretary to the Treasury, British Government, Wamkele Mene, Secretary General, African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, John Denton, Secretary General, International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Vinco David, Secretary General, Berne Union, International Union of Credit & Investment Insurers, Eric Van de Peer, Senior Portfolio Manager, Private Debt, Nationale-Nederlanden Investment Partners, Alastair Mcleod, Senior Vice President, Credit Specialties, Marsh JLT Specialty Limited, Deepak Dave, Chief Risk Officer, African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI), Uche Orji, Chief Executive Officer, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Nic Firzli, Director-General, World Pensions Council (WPC), Duncan Bonfield, Chief Executive, International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF), Jae S. Yoon, CFA, Chief Investment Officer, New York Life Investment Management and Lawrence Yanovitch, Coordinator, The One Planet Sovereign Wealth Fund Initiative.
In addition to the leaders from African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Funds, international investment leaders and co-investment partners from Chicago Teachers Pension Fund, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, and Sweden’s AP3 Pension Fund participated in the dialogue.
The Forum concluded with The African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum and the AUDA Continental Business Network (CBN), agreeing to collaborate through the AfricaPLC eTrade and Trade Finance Platform initiative, to originate and explore pilot ECA Loan Backed transactions, to facilitate co-financing partnerships between institutional investors, Trade Banks, ECA’s and Insurance companies, as a direct African institutional investor response to COVID-19’s impact on the implementation of the AfCFTA.
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CEO and Chairman, Africa investor, Chairman, African Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Forum