A. This year, the African Legal Support Facility (ALSF) began the implementation of its new Medium-Term Strategy (2018-2022). By the end of September 2018, the Facility had approved 24 projects. These interventions targeted 18 countries and covered: 12 advisory projects; 11 capacity building projects, and one knowledge management project. Like in previous years, the ALSF projects have mainly focused on supporting African states to negotiate better agreements, especially in major infrastructure projects and commercial business transactions and natural resource and extractive industries management.
A. The ALSF enjoys a special relationship with the African Development Bank. We are hosted by the Bank in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. The Bank is also our largest funding partner.
The ALSF is closely working with the Bank in areas of common interest. Most notably, through the visionary leadership of the AfDB President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, the Bank articulated a New Deal on Energy for Africa to light up and power Africa by 2025. The ALSF is committed to working with the AfDB on this initiative.
Related to this, we recently created a special division to focus on our power projects which constitute 48 percent of our active portfolio. Our interventions in the energy sector have delivered results. We have assisted African governments on over 20 energy transactions of more than 4000 MW. These operations are facilitating negotiations of Power Purchasing Agreements (PPAs) for renewable and non-renewable energy sources, developing model PPAs and power toolkits and strengthening relevant legal and technical capacities of government officials to unlock the huge energy potential for Africa’s transformation.
A. In 2016, the Bank released an equivalent of USD 22 million to support our work in transitioning states. With this assistance and as articulated in our strategy, we assign priority to the countries in transitioning situations that are eligible for the assistance from the African Development Fund.
Such states are more vulnerable to creditor litigation and more susceptible to the risk of concluding inequitable commercial agreements. To this end, the ALSF has continued to intensify its interventions in these countries, and today we have cumulatively approved over 90 projects amounting to USD 35.3 million to the eligible countries. These operations covered 16 countries including: Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Eritrea, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Togo and Zimbabwe.
A. Yes, the Facility continues to make every effort to deliver on its mandate. For these efforts, the ALSF team was recognized as Best Legal Department of the Year (Large Teams) at the 2018 Annual African Legal Awards held in Johannesburg, South Africa on 8 th September 2018. At the same event, the Facility also received special mention for its support to African governments in negotiating investment related transactions essential for their social and economic development. Similarly, earlier in the year, the ALSF was also recognized by the African Energy Forum as an innovative tool that continues to impact energy development in Africa.
A. The ALSF is primarily supported by voluntary contributions from states and international organizations. Over the years, 16 partners have supported the work of the Facility, and these include: African Development Bank Group; Belgium; Canada; Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Bank for Investment and Development; European Union; France; Guinea-Conakry; India; Islamic Development Bank; Netherlands; Norway; The Ford Foundation; United Kingdom; United States of America; West African Development Bank; and World Bank Group.
A. To accelerate the delivery of the new strategy, the ALSF will need almost USD 123 million over the 5-year period. As we have done previously, we are intensifying our engagement with our existing and potential funding partners to request them to support our work. We are also being creative and innovative. We will soon fully implement our reimbursable financing instruments, and in parallel dialogue and encourage our Regional Member Countries (RMCs) to make voluntary financial donations to the ALSF. These measures will help us sustainably expand our resource base. And in so doing, swiftly and adequately respond to the increasing demand for our services.
We are determined to continue delivering credible results. And committed to equipping Africa countries so that they can negotiate and conclude equitable and sustainable agreements that deliver maximum economic value as well as protect sovereign rights of our clients. Lastly, I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our Management Board and Governing Council for guiding the institution with skill and commitment over years. As we look ahead, we are optimistic that we will continue to fulfill the mandate entrusted to us.