Horn of Africa Initiative gets $8bn commitment from leaders

Tinishu Solomon* [caption id="attachment_13357" align="alignleft" width="480"]United Nations secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon (L) and the World Bank Group president, Jim Yong Kim (R). Photo©Reuters United Nations secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon (L) and the World Bank Group president, Jim Yong Kim (R). Photo©Reuters[/caption] Leaders of global and regional institutions have announced a new commitment worth $8 billion to Horn of Africa countries, as the region receives an influx of investors. United Nations secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon, the World Bank Group (WBG) president, Jim Yong Kim, heads of other international financial and regional institutions are coming together, as they aim to promote stability and development in the Horn of Africa.   Ban and Kim’s visits, which start Monday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, are meant to support peace and security, and economic development of the region through the new Horn of Africa Initiative. As part of their visit, the World Bank Group has made a new financial pledge of $1.8 billion for cross-border activities that will boost economic growth and opportunity, reduce poverty and spur business activity. The initiative covers the eight countries in the Horn of Africa – Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Uganda. The bank said the new fund is in addition to its existing development programmes for the eight countries. “This new financing represents a major new opportunity for the people of the Horn of Africa to make sure they get access to clean water, nutritious food, health care, education, and jobs,” Kim said in a statement on Monday. “There is greater opportunity now for the Horn of Africa to break free from its cycles of drought, food insecurity, water insecurity and conflict by building up regional security.” The European Union, whose top officials are expected to join the visit, also pledged a total of around $3.7 billion until 2020, of which about 10 percent would be for cross-border activities, while the African Development Bank announced a pledge of $1.8 billion over the next three years. The Islamic Development Bank also committed $1 billion to its four member countries in the Horn of Africa, Djibouti, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda. Other leaders on the trip said that the Horn of Africa region needs new development assistance in order to secure peace and opportunity to thrive and prevent future conflicts. “This mission is the apex of an ambitious partnership approach that will provide the necessary instruments to strengthen the resilience agenda in the IGAD region,” the Inter-governmental Authority executive secretary, Ambassador Mahboub Maalim said. *Source theafricareport]]>

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