The African Development Bank(AfDB) Group and the World Bank have agreed to collaborate to identify key areas for intervention that will transform Africa.
The duo in a statement on AfDB’s website, made the agreement at a productive working meeting in Abidjan.
The agreement was made by Senior Vice-President of AfDB, Bajabulile Tshabalala and a delegation from the World Bank led by its Managing Director for Operations, Anna Tshabalala
According to the statement, the collaboration will strengthen efforts to tackle poverty and climate change, develop various sectors, including energy and agriculture, and deal with pandemics.
It said the meeting, which took place at AfDB’s headquarters in Abidjan, built upon previous discussions between World Bank President Ajay Banga and AfDB’s President, Akinwumi Adesina.
The AfDB’s Senior Vice-President provided an update on the Bank Group’s top priorities for the continent, known as the High 5s.
Tshabalala was accompanied by the Vice-President for Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade and several of the Bank Group’s senior managers.
She said the benefit of the meeting was to strengthen efforts already made to tackle poverty and climate change and build young people’s capacity for promoting small and medium-sized businesses.
“The meeting also aims to develop the energy, agricultural and other sectors, and help deal with future pandemics, ” she said.
Tshabalala explained that the Bank was in partnerships with other institutions, such as Afreximbank, the West African Development Bank and others, for better synergies on the ground.
“ Obviously, I think the expectation is that they will come up with the concrete plans and objectives for cooperation and partnership, because I think this is what our shareholders are looking for.
“We want to strongly articulate our joint effort with the World Bank, because the two of us have a unique position on the continent;we do the most development work.
“You know our relationship is going from strength to strength.”
Meanwhile, the World Bank’s Managing Director for Operations lauded the Bank Group’s dedication to fostering synergies among development initiatives in Africa.
Bjerde elaborated on how projects in key areas of focus, funded by the World Bank, could serve as the cornerstone for future partnerships.
She said these included addressing recent crises and prioritising medium-term development goals such as poverty reduction, equitable growth, and tackling climate change.
“Our precedent is huge, which is why I also want to make sure, during my visit, that we spend some time together.
“ And I look forward to seeing what we can do to bring real development ultimately to a higher level. I think we’re all being called upon to become better and bigger”, Bjerde said.
Bjerde’s visit came barely few months after the AfDB’s Group hosted then nominee Ajay Banga. Banga took up his post in Washington in early May. During his stopover, him and President Adesina explored opportunities for collaboration.
Both leaders agreed to work together to achieve transformative results in Africa. They also emphasised the role of the private sector in mobilising capital resources.