Friday, January 7 2022

PARIS

France hosted the Summit on the Financing of African Economies on Tuesday, promising a new economic deal for Africa with debt restructuring and the allocation of special drawing rights.

“The summit is urgent because there is a health emergency due to the pandemic and a social and economic emergency because there is a marked slowdown in growth across Africa,” President Emmanuel Macron said in a statement video in Paris alongside the President of the Democratic Republic of Congo. and the African Union, Felix Tshisekedi and IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva. “We are proposing a new situation, the summit is a paradigm shift.”

He said it is imperative for rich countries “to update our financial rules taking into account this security burden which weighs on many African states”.

The summit agreed on three main decisions: moratorium on the debt of G20 countries from June to December 2021; a common framework for the restructuring of the debt of Chad, Ethiopia and Zambia – to be jointly developed by the United States, the EU and China – and the allocation of special drawing rights of 33 billion dollars to African members and $ 22 billion to sub-Saharan countries.

Macron has said France is willing to reallocate its Strategic Debt Restructuring (SDR) programs and will work to sue rich G7 and G20 countries by October to reach a target of $ 33 billion to $ 100 billion. for Africa. It is estimated that African countries will need funding of 285% billion between 2020 and 2025.

On health, Macron said through the COVAX initiative, the goal is to vaccinate at least 40% of the African population, made possible through collective efforts; by reallocating additional doses and producing the vaccine in Africa.

He said that France has made strong proposals to adjust intellectual property rules and allow a real transfer of technology that will allow the continent to produce more vaccines.

Tshisekedi said the summit was important in reviving Africa which is hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and has drained economies. He added that African countries would like to see the debt moratorium extended from December 2021 to the end of 2022.

Georgieva said the IMF is backing the summit because Africa is only expected to grow “3.2% compared to the rest of the world at 6%”.

“We need to stimulate public and private investment in Africa by mobilizing funding from international organizations and bringing in SDRs from strong countries in Africa,” she said.

The summit brought together 30 African heads of state and government, as well as heads of international organizations, including the World Bank, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (BERD).

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