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The AEB is a joint project by APPO and Afreximbank. (Image source: APPO)

In the true spirit of self-sufficiency, the establishment agreement and charter of the Africa Energy Bank (AEB) was signed this month in Cairo by Benedict Okey Oramah, president of African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) and Omar Farouk Ibrahim, secretary general, African Petroleum Producers' Organisation (APPO) 

The founding documents now await ratification from the Member Countries of APPO. 

A selection committee will be appointed to choose the host country for AEB's headquarters. Countries in the running include Algeria, Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria and South Africa.

A joint project by the APPO Member Countries and Afreximbank, the initial resolution for the establishment of the AEB was passed in the APPO Ministerial Council in 2022 to build financial support for the continent's rich oil and gas industry.

The primary objective of this development bank would be to support the domestic market, while prioritising the states that have given ratification as benefitiaries. 

APPO has always been enthusiastic in promoting local content in the oil and gas industy, and its recent memorandum of understanding with African Energy Chamber endeavours to empower local companies to become world-class operators capable of delivering major projects. 

Supporting domestic market

National companies in the hydrocarbon and energy sectors, as well as any private or public entity, having an impact on the development of the industry in the Member Countries will also have access to AEB's services. 

During the OPEC-Africa Energy Dialogue 2024 held in Cairo, the Africa Refineries and Distributors' Association (ARDA) expressed interest on providing prospective downstream projects for the AEB initiative.

A working group was brought together to develop the essential technical aspects of AEB's establishment. 

The bank is counting on an initial capital of US$5bn, and anticipating robust growth due to huge sector demands. Nigeria, Angola and Ghana have begun contributing their shares of a minimum amount of US$83.33mn that is expected of each Member Country to advance the project's capitalisation. 

The partners will also initate key staff recruitment for the AEB’s development.