The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has trained more than 1,500 African bankers and trade finance practitioners in structured trade finance, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to improve economic conditions of the continent, Dr. Benedict Oramah, President of the Bank, has announced in Nairobi.
Speaking during the opening of Afreximbank’s 15th Annual Structured Trade Finance Seminar taking place in the Kenyan capital from 10 to 13 November, Dr. Oramah said that the training provided by the Bank covered both rudimentary and advanced knowledge of the subject.
“The primary goals of our Structured Trade Finance Seminars are to create and expand the knowledge of African bankers and other trade practitioners on issues relating to structuring trade and supply chain finance deals of varying levels of complexity,” he said, explaining that Afreximbank had been able to structure and deliver a significant number of deals, including in the most difficult markets, by using the structured trade finance approach.
According to Dr. Oramah, beyond the training provided during the seminar, Afreximbank expects the event to also create networking opportunities for participants in order to foster intra-African banking partnerships and enhance collaboration by financial institutions in financing African trade.
Declaring open the seminar, Sheila Mmbijjewe, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya, said that structured trade finance was critical to stabilising the African market and that the training provided by Afreximbank would make it possible to find tailor-made African solutions to African problems.
Ms. Mmbijjewe said that Africa’s current poor trade performance was linked to the financing gap that existed on the continent.
In a message to the seminar, Emmanuel Nnadozie, Executive Secretary of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), said that access to affordable trade finance was a key constraint to trade development in Africa and noted that through the structured trade finance seminar, Afreximbank was meeting the immediate skills needed to structure trade transactions.
Prof. Nnadozie, who was represented by Ernest Eti, expressed ACBF’s support for Afreximbank’s capacity building efforts and reiterate the commitment of ACBF to building critical skills and knowledge.
The Structured Trade Finance Seminar is beginning with two days of discussions on structured trade finance, to be followed by one and half days of workshops focusing on receivables finance.
The seminar series is organised by Afreximbank as part of initiatives to increase the trade and trade finance capacities of key players in the continent’s trade sector in line with the Bank’s mandate and mission to be “the Centre of Excellence in African Trade Matters”.
More than 120 participants from 24 countries from across Africa, joined by others from China, the United States, the United Kingdom, India and the United Arab Emirates, are participating in the seminar.
Manal Mounir Hendy