AFFORD celebrates 25 years of diaspora impact in Africa with a conference focused on the role of the diaspora in financing major infrastructural development

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In July 2019, AFFORD marks its 25th anniversary with a call to the African diaspora to do more for the growth and development of Africa. Going beyond sending money home, the diaspora should now seek opportunities that will target key strategic sectors in order to transform Africa in the next 25 years.

Co-founders Chukwu-Emeka Chikezie and Nicholas Atampurge created AFFORD in 1994 with a clear mission to establish an organisation that advocated for the role of diaspora in African and international development. Since then, AFFORD has played a key role in presenting solutions and innovative programmes that bring together diaspora and the diverse and important institutional development stakeholders. Our extensive knowledge of diaspora investments, remittances, and fund structures, include the ‘RemitPlus™ Diaspora Finance Report (2011)’, which provided outlines for African Diaspora Bonds, Diaspora Mutual Fund, Diaspora SME Fund, and Diaspora Bank Accounts. That 2011 report influenced many processes, policies and practices including the: AU Global African Diaspora Summit (2012); UN High Level Dialogue on Migration (2013); Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development (2015); Joint Valletta Action Plan (2015); target 10.7 of Sustainable development Goals (2015); Paragraph 35 and 44 of the recently concluded UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (13 July 2018); and the £2.9 million diaspora finance element of the Comic Relief/UKAid funded Common Ground Initiative (CGI) Programme, the largest diaspora finance programme to date.

As it looks to the next 25 years, AFFORD strongly believes that there is potential for facilitating greater Diaspora Direct Investment (DDI)  into Africa in order to help meet the continent’s growing infrastructure and energy needs.  

DDI will be part of an innovative use of blended finance with new philanthropic models, and to develop new models of public-private-partnership that will be needed to achieve ambitious SDG poverty reduction targets.

Executive Director Onyekachi Wambu said;

“In the first 25 years, we brought the diaspora together, expanded on and enhanced major contributions through remittances and skills transfer that they were already making to Africa’s development. AD3 2019 will begin the work of the next 25 years, exploring how the diaspora can make a strategic impact through different forms of financial instruments that could be created and harnessed to maximise African diaspora investment for development”.

He continued: “Now in its 19th year, AD3 is recognized as an agenda setting space, bringing together leaders and influencers from the African diaspora community and policymakers, to learn, share and enhance the prospects for investments into key African sectors. It also serves as a platform for influential African voices to inform and mobilise these audiences in the UK for significant action.”

Highlights/Editor’s notes

AFFORD was established in 1994, with a mission “to expand and enhance the contributions Africans in the diaspora make to African development”. Priority projects and activities are focused on diaspora contributions to job creation through African enterprise development. AFFORD’s innovative approach mobilises the financial, intellectual, and political assets of the African diaspora and channels them to drive economic growth and social development in Africa. It also enhances the capacity of actual and potential investors and actively influences international policies to create an enabling investment climate. AFFORD’s mission is achieved through programmes and projects undertaken solely or in collaboration with partners in Africa, the U.K, E.U and other parts of the world. These projects and programmes fall within the following overlapping themes:

  • Investment, Enterprise & Employment
  • Diaspora Engagement, Network Building & Training Services
  • Learning & Policy Advocacy

For more enquiries contact the AFFORD communications team on 020 3326 3750 or email us at info@afford-uk.org

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