The high-level forum, taking place on 18 December 2018 in Vienna, focused on European investment as the key to Africa's long-term development. Over the next few years, OeEB will expand its involvement in Africa to foster investment and create new prospects.

Financing sustainable projects

from left to right: Sebastian Kurz, Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda, and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission

The Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance has taken the forum as an opportunity to set up a new investment fund of EUR 10 million for smaller investments of Austrian SMEs in Africa. The fund will be managed by OeEB. The aim is to enable sustainable projects in African countries and thereby contribute to employment and stabilization in these countries.

Particularly for smaller projects with high unit costs or projects with high risk, the Austrian economy has repeatedly indicated a funding gap. At the same time, the new investment fund also closes a gap between the Business Partnerships of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) and larger financing and investment projects of OeEB. The Austrian Ministry of Finance will elaborate the new instrument in detail in cooperation with experts from OeEB at the beginning of 2019.

In addition, OeEB will increase its involvement in Africa to around 20% of its new business, which is equivalent to around EUR 55 million a year.