AfDB issues first ‘Light Up and Power Africa’ themed bond worth $88m

The African Development Bank (AfDB) says it has issued the first ‘Light Up and Power Africa’ themed bond worth 10 billion Japanese yen, approximately $88 million.

The Bank says it sold the Bond for SEK 733 million to Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company Limited. The insurer is the sole investor in the transaction, the Bank stated.

According to the AfDB, the “Light Up and Power Africa” Bond supports its ambition to achieve an important goal of realizing Africa’s energy potential and bridging the continent’s energy deficit.

“Over 645 million Africans have no access to energy. The electricity access rate for African countries is just over 40 per cent, the lowest in the world. This undermines efforts to lift Africans out of poverty. Access to energy is crucial for the attainment of health and education outcomes, reducing the cost of doing business, unlocking economic potential, and creating jobs. Over 90 per cent of Africa’s primary schools lack electricity while 600,000 Africans die each year due to a lack of clean cooking energy. Insufficient energy access handicaps the operations of hospitals and emergency services; compromises educational attainment; and drives up the cost of doing business,” the Bank said.

The AfDB believes that energy access for all is one of the key drivers of inclusive growth as it creates opportunities for women, youth, and children in urban and rural areas.

“The aspirational goal of this priority area is to help the continent achieve universal electricity access by 2025 with a strong focus on encouraging clean and renewable energy solutions. This will require generating 160 GW of new capacity, 130 million new on-grid connections, 75 million new off-grid connections and providing 150 million households with access to clean cooking solutions,” it added.

The Bond issued on September 21, 2017 is for 10 years and will reach maturity on September 21, 2027. The Sole Lead Manager is Deutsche Bank AG.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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