The G7 summit has been hailed for its commitment to support the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (Afawa) initiative with more than Sh20.7 billion (USD200 million).
The 2019 G7 summit held in Biarritz, France, committed to boost women entrepreneurs in Africa through Afawa, a joint initiative of African Development Bank (AfDB) and the African Guarantee Fund (AGF) with French President Emmanuel Macron, who is the head of the summit, announcing the move.
The move has been hailed by AGF Group Chief Executive Officer Felix Bikpo who also acknowledged the AfDB for spearheading the initiative.
He applauded the G7 leadership for recognising the role of women as the backbone of the continent’s growth.
“AGF’s strategy recognises women as a great pillar of development of African economies and has always focused on increasing access to finance to women. In fact, 30 percent of SMEs supported by the AGF are owned or led by women. Through Afawa, our role in financing women will be reinforced to enable even more women fully play their roles as drivers of economy through the SMEs they own or lead,” Mr Bikpo said.
The fund for women in Africa takes a holistic approach based on boosting access to finance for women-owned and women-led businesses, strengthening the capacity of women entrepreneurs and financial institutions and mobilising and supporting African governments to enact legal, political and regulatory reforms needed for the development of women entrepreneurship.
The African Guarantee Fund was founded by the government of Denmark through the Danish International Development Agency (Danida), the government of Spain through the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development (AECID) and AfDB.
Other shareholders include Agencé Française de Développement (AFD), Nordic Development Fund (NDF), Investment Fund for Developing Countries (IFU) and KfW Development Bank (KfW).