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AfDB reiterates commitment to Africa’s infrastructure needs

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World Cement,

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has reiterated its commitment to addressing Africa’s infrastructure needs at the first ever Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) week.

Moono Mupotola, AfDB's Director for NEPAD, Regional Integration and Trade, said implementation of the PIDA Priority Action Plan (PAP) projects will have a direct impact on the Bank's ability to deliver on its five new focus areas, which include power, food, industry, integration and quality of life.

"Energy plays a big part in industrialisation and job creation," Mupotola said, adding that the energy sector will consume 59% of PIDA PAP's estimated investment of US$68 billion to be realised in 2020. The other sectors are transport, water and ICT.

Job creation was another hot topic. Job creation, particularly for the youth, could be realised through developing agriculture, which goes hand-in-hand with boosting rural infrastructure, according to Rhoda Peace Tumusiime, African Union's Commissioner for rural economy and agriculture. She described infrastructure as a catalyst for achieving most of Africa's development.

"I see a lot of connectedness between infrastructure, agriculture, rural development and trade," she stated. "Infrastructure has increased intra-African trade from 11 to 16% in the past few years,” she noted.

Over the last decade, the AfDB has invested directly over US$30 billion in infrastructure, which has constituted over 50% of the Bank's lending activities.

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