The Afreximbank will be investing US $700 million in the region when arrangements for the opening of a Caribbeaneximbank as a subsidiary or an affiliate have been finalised.

President of the bank and Chairman of the board of directors, Professor Benedict Oramah said the investment would build on the US $250 million allocated for Africa-Caribbean trade and investment.   

Addressing an audience comprising local, regional and international stakeholders during the opening ceremony of the Africa, Caribbean Trade and Investment Forum 2022 under the theme: One People One Destiny, at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford yesterday, he said the bank was keen to advance discussions with the Caribbean Development Bank and to scale-up trade-enabling infrastructure investments in the region.

Professor Oramah also spoke about the bank’s support in critical areas such as oil and gas sector initiatives, agro-processing projects, climate change adaptation initiatives, and the establishment of industrial parks, among others.

He noted that the signing of the partnership agreement with some Caribbean countries would pave the way for the Afreximbank to operate within CARICOM and “deliver on the new vision.” The President stated: “We must collaborate in the healthcare space so that shortages of qualified healthcare professionals can be overcome. We hope to leave here with Afreximbank not only serving as the EXIM bank for Africa but also for the Caribbean. All these [initiatives] will require funding, investment, courage, boldness and careful planning. That is why we 20 are most pleased to have made tremendous progress in accelerating the membership of the CARICOM nations in Afreximbank.”

Mr. Oramah has also promised to expand the bank’s annual internship progamme for Caribbean students to allow them to gain experience that would lead to attachments at other leading banks and corporations.

He also expressed the hope that at the end of the summit there would be “actionable proposals” on the way forward and in particular, a direct flight between the two countries.

julie.carrington@barbados.gov.bb

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