The Central bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor Patrick Njoroge said the continent’s over-dependence on external financing sources made it vulnerable to such shocks.
“Because Afreximbank was a home-grown institution, it understood the unique requirements and needs of African businesses,” Njoroge said late Friday in a speech read on his behalf by Anne Muoki, Assistant Director in the Bank, during the final session of the 15th Afreximbank Structured Trade Finance Seminar in Nairobi.
The remarks came as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had cautioned African countries against rushing to issue eurobonds, saying they may face exchange rate risks and problems repaying debts.
African governments facing falling levels of foreign aid are on a borrowing spree to pay for new infrastructure projects and energy projects, prompting concern from many analysts that this could raise debt levels and undermine growth.
Njoroge explained that if Africa was to achieve the desired growth, it should effect a change in the way it sought financing for trade activities.
The CBK governor urged the participants to share the knowledge they had acquired during the four-day seminar with their colleagues and counterparts in their home countries upon their return.
Hippolyte Fofack, Afreximbank’s Chief Economist, commended Kenya’s apex bank for its support for the seminar and said that the training provided participants with the tools to effectively structure bankable trade finance transactions adapted to the specific context of African markets.
Afreximbank’s Executive Vice President for Corporate Governance and Legal Services George Elombi said the Bank had identified structured trade finance as an important tool for financing African trade.
He added that the Bank was actively promoting factoring and forfeiting in order to meet the financing needs of Africa’s small and medium sized enterprises.
Some 120 participants from 24 countries across Africa received certificates for completing the training programme, which featured experts from the U.S., Britain, Switzerland, China, India and Africa sharing their knowledge with the African bankers, legal practitioners, insurers, financial institutions, funds, venture capital institutions and corporate entities engaged in trade finance and trade-related projects. Enditem