Afrexim Bank To Introduce Trade Facilitation Programme
Afrexim Bank headquarters in Cairo Egypt. Image: Guardian NG

The African Export-Import (Afrexim) bank has started a trade facilitation programme aimed at bridging Africa’s trade financing.

This was revealed by Afreximbank Executive Vice President, Business Development and Corporate Banking, Amr Kamel in a roadshow in Lagos on Monday.

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“The key reason why we are here is to formally present to you our trade facilitation programmes,” Kamel said.

“We have a number of them which we think can further open up business opportunities for the financial institutions here.

“We are still very enthusiastic to do more in Nigeria. We want the financial institutions to see us as solution provider particularly when there are capital constraints or certain other issues that you may need to address.”

In addition, Kamel said: “Currently we have over $4 billion that are still running also within this market. So we see the Nigerian market as a very strategic one for us.”

He stated: “The first reason is because Africa currently is the home to five of the fastest growing economies in the world. Also within this African continent we have 14 economies that are growing at a GDP rate of over five percent.

“Over the last decade African trade has increased three folds. Currently, it is estimated to be in the region of $1.5 trillion. It is an extraordinary figure which is expected to continue on a 10 percent year-on-year growth rate.

“So if we look at this statistics, there is a lot that is happening through Africa but there is so little that we are doing either as African financial institutions or African corporate, and this is making our own share of the global trade to be very insignificant. NACCIMA embarks on industrial clusters development to boost MSMEs

“Currently, African share of the global trade is less than five percent. It is somewhere between three and five percent and we think we should do more. The figure is low primarily because African economy is still commodity based.

“So Afreximbank came up with this. We put almost $2 billion in this trade facilitation programme to support the African economies.”