African Development Bank boosts presence in Portuguese-speaking Africa

14 September 2006

Lisbon, Portugal, 14 Sept – The African Development Bank (ADB) plans to boost its presence in Portuguese-speaking African countries in order to increase the “efficiency” of the aid provided, the president of the bank said in Lisbon Wednesday.

Speaking to Portuguese news agency Lusa, Donald Kaberuka said that the ADB was to open a delegation in Luanda in the third quarter of 2007 and was preparing to widen the responsibilities of the existing delegation in Maputo, Mozambique, a country to which the bank has pledged US$250 million over the next two years.

Maputo, according to a ADB spokesperson, will coordinate all of the bank’s activities in southern Africa, making it the bank’s largest regional delegation.

In relation to the Community of Portuguese-speaking Countries, the spokesperson added, “a possible increase in cooperation,” had already been discussed and for this the ADB wanted to “increase its Portuguese-speaking staff.”

The bank plans to grant aid of around 62 million euros to Angola in the 2005-2007 period, the head of the bank for that country, Septime Martin told Lusa.

For Guinea Bissau the bank plans to grant some US$10 million, mainly for agricultural and institutional projects.

Around US$1 million will be used to support a study on developing cashew nut production in the country, an activity that Kaberuka said had “great potential” to re-launch Guinea Bissau’s economy. (macauhub)