Need for innovative Africa infrastructure
GLOBAL leaders and representatives of Canada, France, Switzerland, China, South Africa and the US, questioned the ability of public sectors across the globe to develop proper infrastructure ecosystems.
Financing of infrastructure projects seems not to be the major obstacle any more with much lower cost of borrowing capital.
According to Christian Mumenthaler, the group chief executive Swiss Re, the focus should rather be on unlocking funds for innovative infrastructure solutions and catalysing transactions with risk mitigation instruments.
Patrick Dlamini, the chief executive of the Development Bank of Southern Africa, noted the importance of transformation and urban development in Africa.
“It is critical that various governments work together in Africa, agree on regional development projects and ensure that what has been promised, is delivered.
“There is a big need for political leadership in African countries that create an investor friendly environment”, he said.
Dlamini is confident that South Africa and Africa can attract long-term funding, but “investors require a harmonised economic and political environment”.
Delegates were entertained by Lawrence H Summers’ remarks at the Strategic Update: The Future of Infrastructure Development.
Summers warned against governments offering “guarantees” and governments offering projects to their “connections”.
It seems as if this is not only a South African phenomenon!
He also questioned the success of the so called “Public Private Partnership” transactions.
“There are no real successful transactions that I am aware of ”, he said. “Let us rather talk about privatising of existing infrastructure to finance new infrastructure projects,” Summers said.
‘There is a big need for political leadership in African countries that create an investor friendly environment.’