AfDB, Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus launch social business initiative for Africa

Prof. YunusThe African Development Bank (AfDB) together with the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Muhammad Yunus have launched what they call a social business programme for Africa.

The Tunis-based lender and the founder of Grameen Bank on March 13, 2013 officially launched the Holistic Social Business Movement in Africa (HSBM), a two-year programme to be funded by a grant from the Government of Japan and co-financed by the AfDB.

The initiative was announced when Mr Yunus paid a visit to the headquarters of the AfDB in Tunis, Tunisia.

The HSBM projects will be piloted in Togo, Tunisia and Uganda, the AfDB said indicating that it will be expanded in other African countries.

“This programme will be implemented in two phases: first, through awareness raising and capacity-building of stakeholders in Social Business; second, with the implementation of social business incubation funds in Tunisia and Togo,” the Bank said in a statement.

The AfDB says the programme is part of its Joint Initiative on Youth Employment in Africa, in partnership with the African Union Commission, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the International Labour Organization.

“Inclusive development is at the heart of the priorities of the African Development Bank. The African continent is ready for the development of the social economy,” said African Development Bank President Donald Kaberuka.

The AfDB explained that the three countries were selected on the basis of an assessment of their youth unemployment rates.

By Ekow Quandzie

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