Business & Economy

Adesina confirms he will run for 2020 AfDB presidency

Adesina confirms he will run for 2020 AfDB presidency
  • PublishedJune 14, 2019

The African Development Bank’s President Akinwumi Adesina told reporters in Malabo that he is seeking to renew his presidency in 2020 when his first term comes to an end.

“I will run again to continue the work we started,” he said at the end of the bank’s 54th annual meetings in Equatorial Guinea.

The AfDB president is elected by its board of governors who are made up of appointed representatives from the bank’s 80 member countries, with voting power proportionate to their capital subscription. 

The vote takes place during the annual meeting closest to the end of the serving president’s term.

Replacing Rwandan-economist Donald Kaberuka on September 1st 2015, Adesina will seek re-election during the bank’s next annual meetings at its headquarters in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

Of the AfDB’s 54 African and 26 non-African members, Nigeria, United States, Japan, Egypt and South Africa have the greatest share of the vote in that order.

Nigeria, where Adesina formerly served as minister of agriculture and rural development, holds the greatest proportion at 9.281 % of the total.

Assessing the five years prior, Adesina said: “Don’t focus on what we say but focus on what we do.”

Under his watch the president pointed to key metrics such as connecting 16m people to power, 70m farmers to technology and 55m people to clean water and sanitation.

“These are some of the achievements but I can tell you that there are still many miles to cover,” he commented.

Maintaining the bank’s AAA rating since he joined, Adesina has cemented the bank’s reputation as a first-class financial institution and has added to its ability to raise, earn and spend capital.

According to the latest figures released at the conference, the bank has generated $2.5bn since 2010.

Last year the bank earned $214m in income, 48% of which was reinvested back into the institution to reinforce reserves and boost business growth.

In 2017, $8.8bn in loans and other assistance was disbursed for development purposes across the continent.

The bank is now pursuing its seventh capital increase, the last one approved in 2010 by its governors who act as shareholders.

The decision is set to be made later this year, as bank representatives argue more capital is needed to extend the bank’s services.  

As a sign of good faith, Canada, who own $4.64bn worth of AfDB shares, recently upped its commitment of callable capital, or money which can be paid to the bank on request, to $1.1bn.

With Adesina earning the moniker of the AAA president, the bank’s capital increase is expected to be approved – some predicting by as much as three times over.

“I am driven by Africa so as president of the bank, I can tell you this is no chore for me; it is a labour of love and I feel truly confident when I see the trust the governors have placed in us,” he said.

Written By
Tom Collins

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