The African Development Bank has announced it will be decentralizing its structure and repackaging how it tackles key issues in development, as part of implementing its new 10-year strategy.
Former Nigerian Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Bank President Akinwumi Adesina, is pushing to increase capacity at local offices, reframe the continent’s agriculture sector around commercialization, and target unemployment through vocational and technical training.
The new strategy, which runs from 2016 to 2025, is called the “High 5” Agenda. The key priorities in the strategy include electrifying, integrating, and industrializing the continent, ensuring food security, and improving the quality of life for Africans.
The bank is moving forward on its projects amidst a backdrop of decreased funding, Valerie Dabady Liverani, division manager of AfDB’s Resource Mobilization and Partnerships Department, told Devex. Luckily, it recently signed a framework agreement with the European Union, currently valued at about $512 million.
“This, for us, is a landmark, because it allows us to get access, in very tough economic times, to grant financing for projects,” said Dabady Liverani.
The immediate changes to the bank will be as follows;
1. Decentralizing bank operations to regional offices
2. Refocusing agriculture around commercialization
3. Moving into skills training to counter youth unemployment