Burkina Faso signs ATI’s Participation Agreement
16-12-2021 09:15:00 | by: Pie Kamau | hits: 3229 | Tags:

The Government of Burkina Faso signed the Participation Agreement with the African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI), a condition precedent to the disbursement of €15 million by the European Investment Bank (EIB) for Burkina Faso’s Membership in ATI. This follows the signing of a financing agreement between the Government of Burkina Faso and EIB, in October 2020.

Recently, the Government of Burkina Faso ratified the ATI Treaty, which grants ATI a preferred creditor status, prioritising payment to ATI as a result of sovereign actions or defaults. Following the signed participation agreement, EIB will disburse Burkina Faso’s equity, thus completing Burkina Faso’s membership requirements.

Manuel MOSES, CEO, ATI: ''We look forward to ushering in a new year with Burkina Faso as our latest Member State, as the country stands to leverage its investment many times over. ATI works a lot “behind the scenes” in support of strategic trade and investment projects, though our contribution to economies of Member States is not always visible to the public. We however continue to be a facilitator and a catalyst to investment and trade that is helping economic engines on the continent run rapidly and more efficiently amidst uncertainties posed by the global COVID pandemic.''

ATI was established in 2001 by COMESA with technical and financial support from the World Bank Group, to help African states attract investments and facilitate trade. The multilateral political and credit risk insurer is owned by twenty African sovereign nations, and Burkina Faso is expected to join as the twenty-first African member state. This is a welcome expansion into Central and West Africa as membership from the two regions currently stands at nine. Other African countries expected to join ATI in the coming months include Angola, Chad, Egypt, and Mali at the tail end of their membership processes.

Lassané KABORÉ, Minister of Economy, Finance and Development, Burkina Faso: ''Membership to ATI will not only enable Burkina Faso to attract investors, but will also allow the country to implement major projects, improve and secure its regional and international trade, thus contributing to the realisation of the vision of its second National Economic and Social Development Plan (PNEDS-II). The plan aims to position Burkina Faso as a resilient, cohesive, democratic and peaceful nation, transforming the structure of its economy to achieve a strong and sustainable growth.''

Membership in ATI will help address the socio-economic challenges caused by COVID-19 in Burkina Faso. Moreover, it will enable the country ameliorate its business climate with access to a range of guarantee instruments and other investment and trade insurance products offered by ATI. Consequently, ATI’s investment guarantee mechanism is expected to provide security to investors and facilitate trade and access to finance for development projects in the country. ATI’s current gross exposure in Burkina Faso stands at $36 million - with a prospective market of priority projects in the financial, renewable energy, oil and gas sectors: estimated at $1.8 billion expected to materialize when the country completes its ATI membership. 

Burkina Faso’s membership in ATI comes at an opportune time, as ATI aims to support the government’s priorities outlined in its 2021-2025 National Economic and Social Development Plan (PNDES - II) inspired by PNDES 2016 – 2020. The Plan is built around three strategic pillars with specific focus on the structural transformation of the Burkinabe economy.

Ambroise Fayolle, Vice President, European Investment Bank: ''Unlocking investment and unblocking trade is essential to accelerate economic growth, create jobs and strengthen economic resilience to COVID-19. The EIB is supporting expansion of the African Trade Insurance Agency across Africa and is pleased to enable Burkina Faso to benefit from trade and investment insurance.''