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Professor Oramah to “Global Africans”: Invest in African DFI

Professor Benedict Oramah, President and chairman of the board of directors of Afreximbank

President and chairman of the board of directors of Afreximbank, Professor Benedict Oramah, has called on Africans and African business leaders living in the diaspora (Global Africans), to invest in African development finance institutions (DFI) to build their capacity to support the continent’s development agenda.

He made the call when he addressed attendees of the maiden event of the Global Africa Forum (GAF), organized by Africa Prosperity Network (APN) and the Africa-America Institute (AAI) on the sidelines of the 78th United Nations General Assembly in New York on Thursday 21 September 2023.

The theme for the maiden GAF was; “Mobilizing Global Africa Investment to Boost Intra African Trade”. Professor Oramah noted in his statement that Afreximbank identifies fully with the concept of global Africans.

He added that the efforts made by development finance institutions on the African continent such Afreximbank during the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic is enough evidence that with the necessary investments and support, DFI’s on the continent are capable of spearheading the development of Africa.

“With the current global financial system, African development finance institutions must rise to the occasion to support African countries to invest in those sectors and activities that truly matter for Africa’s development” Professor Oramah said.

“It is naive to assume that your competitor in a global development space will have your best interest at heart. It is crucial to realize that when we pull together as global Africa, we can make our development financial institutions stronger through proper capitalization and intact, provide them with an opportunity for risk diversification through wider geographic coverage and it is DFI (Development Finance Institutions) that must lead the way towards the full integration of the continent as we speak about global Africa” he added.

APD 2024 launched

As part of the ceremony, the Africa Prosperity Network (APN) launched the second edition of the Africa Prosperity Dialogues (APD) which will take place in Ghana from Thursday 25 to Saturday 27 January 2024, under the theme: “Delivering Prosperity in Africa by Producing what we Trade”.

Executive Chairman of APN, Gabby Otchere-Darko, in launching the APD noted that since the 21 September is the birthday of Ghana’s first President Dr Kwame Nkrumah, it was appropriate for him to the task with a quote from the former President some 60 years ago when the OAU (Organization of African Unity) was created.


“The resources are there; it is for us to marshal them in the active service of our people. Unless we do this by our concerted effort, within the frame work of our combined planning, we shall not progress at the tempo demanded by today’s events and the mode of our people.


“The symptoms of our troubles will grow and the troubles themselves, become chronic. It will then be too late for pan African unity to secure for us stability and tranquility in with our neighbours for a continent of social justice and material well-being” Mr Otchere-Darko said in quoting the late Dr Kwame Nkrumah.

Necessary actions

On his part, Kofi Appenteng, the President and Chief Executive Officer of the African American Institute (AAI), observed that there are three things that governments on the African continent need to take action on in order to create an enabling environment to attract funds from existing diaspora networks.

The first he said is ease of travel and the challenges that exist with getting visas to be able to travel to the African continent on short notice. According to the AAI president, “if you (Africa) want to create an enabling environment for investments, people need to be able to travel easily”.


“This is something that is within the power of African countries to do something about and it is in line with the African Continental Free Trade Area. We are not going to have the opportunity to create this market if travel continue to be difficult” Kofi Appenteng said.


“The other is, for those who do not have citizenship of any African country, there needs to be the ability for a pathway for residency and also citizenship, because if you are really going to make long term investments, you are going to really need to know that if you go and sit, watch your money and make partnership, etc., that you can do so [safely and freely].

“This is something that again is in the control of African governments”. The last concern has to do with the real estate sector and the ability to buy real estate or houses” Mr Appenteng added.

In attendance

Apart from, President Akufo-Addo, other dignitaries who attended the forum included Professor Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman of the board of directors, Afreximbank and Secretary-General of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) secretariat, H.E. Wamkele Mene.

Other attendees were Dr. Amany Asfour, President of the Africa Business Council, Ms. Ahunna Eziakonwa, Assistant Secretary General UNDP-RBA, Derrick Johnson– President, NCAAP, Mr. Julius Mwale, President, and CEO of SBA Technologies Inc, and several other leading Global Africa business leaders.

Reporting by Wilberforce Asare in Accra

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