Korea approves $18m grant to AfDB

South Korea has approved $18 million to replenished the KOAFEC Trust Fund domiciled at the African Development Bank (AfDB).

The African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Korean Ministry of Strategy and Finance signed the Exchange of Letters for the grant for the year 2017 – 2018.

The KOAFEC Trust Fund is AfDB’s largest bilateral fund.

Under the agreement, Korea will support the Bank’s strategic priority areas, commonly known as the “High Fives”, which seek to address the socio-economic challenges in Africa.

The assistance, will among other things, develop Africa’s value chains, agro-poles and special industrial zones.

The replenishment brings to $78 million the total amount provided by the KOAFEC Trust Fund to the African Development Bank.

The fund has supported capacity building, technical assistance to African countries, as well as promoted the sharing of Korea’s economic development models with Africa.

The Trust Fund has boosted a wide range of projects in transport, energy, water, agriculture and agro-industry.

President of AfDB, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, lauded Korea for its support and long-standing partnership with the Bank.

“Korea is a strong partner for Africa’s development. You are dependable partners. You care, and you deliver,” he noted.

The country joined the African Development Bank and African Development Fund in 1982 and 1980, respectively.

Having transformed its economy through policy reforms in industrialization, Korea will strengthen Africa’s ICT capacities through training and skills transfer, and will support regulatory framework development to woo private sector participation so as to enhance manufacturing and industrialization in Africa.

Il-ho Yoo, Korea’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Strategy and Finance, reiterated his country’s support to Africa, citing the important role of the Trust Fund in strengthening the relationship between Korea and Africa.

“We understand the challenges facing the continent. In order to ensure that African countries enjoy inclusive growth, we will share our knowledge on how we achieved transformation,” he said.

Yoo noted that his country’s development support for Africa would reflect the AfDB’s five priorities which are aimed at achieving Africa’s transformation in 10 years.

These are Light up and power Africa, Feed Africa, Industrialize Africa, Integrate Africa, and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.

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