Private Development Group Urges Sub-Saharan Africa to Boost Private Sector Investment in Infrastructure

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The Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG), a multi-donor organisation with operations in Sub-Saharan Africa and other parts of the globe, has called on the region’s governments and industry stakeholders to boost private sector investment in infrastructure.

The organisation, which helps mobilise resources needed to build roads, bridges, ports, hydroelectric plants and fibre-optic cabling, held a meeting with high profile donors this weekend to discuss how best to maximise finance for development to end poverty and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Sustainable Development Goals are a set of 17 global goals spearheaded by the United Nations through a deliberative process involving its 193 member states.

PIDG’s meeting was part of an initiative dubbed Finance for Development (Fin4Dev), a product of multilateral development banks and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) aimed at provoking debate with regard to sustainable development.

The panel discussion was moderated by Kenyan-born MSNBC Host, Ali Velshi and focused on private sector solutions in development.

“Private sector investment in infrastructure will be crucial if we are to meet the Sustainable Development Goals,” said World Bank President Jim Yong Kim.

Speaking at the event, he added that the level of development needed to achieve the SDGs will cost $4 trillion per year.

“Official development assistance (ODA) and governments alone cannot meet this challenge,” the World Bank President said.

“Only when we work in partnership with the private sector can we maximise funding for development,” said Rwanda’s President, Paul Kagame, who was also at the event.

“PIDG’s specialist companies work with private investors at every stage of the infrastructure project development cycle and across the capital structure. Our companies’ infrastructure finance products are designed to fill market gaps, where commercial financing is not available,” Philippe Valahu, the Group’s Chief Executive Officer said in a statement.

Valahu added that PIDG has helped create 4,349 short-term jobs and 7,404 long-term employment opportunities in Rwanda, according to its 2016 annual report. In Tanzania, $2.6 billion in funding has been mobilised from private sector investors and development finance institutions with the organisation’s supervision.

He said that an estimated 30.6million people in Tanzania now have access to new or improved infrastructure thanks to PIDG’s efforts.

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