Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 10 November 2023 - The Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) President H.E. Dr. Muhammad Al Jasser, participated in a panel session on the Roadmap for Sustainable Development, as part of the Saudi-Arab-African Economic Conference held in Riyadh. The conference aims to foster economic cooperation, trade, and investment between Saudi Arabia and the Arab world and African nations.
During the session, Dr. Al Jasser addressed the optimal approach for African countries seeking partnerships with the Arab Coordination Group (ACG) and the IsDB Group. He highlighted key principles that guide the ACG's engagement with partner countries, emphasizing that successful partnerships are founded on principles such as country ownership, stability, predictability, and consistency. He pointed out that the ACG's non-prescriptive approach and flexibility are some of its trademarks, offering African nations a unique partnership opportunity. Dr. Al Jasser also underscored that the ACG has committed more than US$220 billion over the past six decades to drive progress in Africa.
Furthermore, Dr. Al Jasser shed light on some of the IsDB and ACG development operations and programs in Africa. These endeavors encompass education, health, agriculture, transport, infrastructure, water, and sanitation, showcasing the ACG's comprehensive approach to development in the region. This partnership has enabled the development of crucial hydropower and multipurpose infrastructure projects across Africa.
He further emphasized the role IsDB and ACG play in promoting regional integration and connectivity in Africa, supporting trans-Saharan and trans-Sahelian land corridors and launching initiatives like the Arab-Africa Trade Bridges (AATB) Program to enhance trade and investment flows between Arab and African countries.
At the event, Dr. Al Jasser unveiled ambitious plans for the IsDB Group's investments in Africa, with an estimated US$37 billion earmarked for projects through 2030, excluding guarantees. This includes a commitment of up to US$7.8 billion for agriculture and rural development in Africa, with a focus on addressing short-term food security challenges and enhancing agricultural value chains.
The IsDB's long-standing partnership with Africa, dating back to its first project in 1976, highlights its dedication to promoting economic growth, stability, and sustainable development in the African continent.