Capital FM (Nairobi)

4 April 2014

Kenya: Sh1.73 Billion AFDB Loan to Fund Construction in Kenya, Region

Nairobi — Shelter Afrique has signed a Sh1.73 billion loan agreement with the African Development Bank (AfDB), one of its primary shareholders.

The loan is intended to boost the trade finance instruments to small and medium enterprises involved in real estate and construction related activities in the country and Africa at large.

The AfDB's four-year facility will allow Shelter Afrique to expand its Trade Finance Program launched in June 2011, under a product diversification strategy to address the acute financing shortage facing real estate developers on the continent.

Shelter Afrique Managing Director Alassane Ba said the facility will contribute to addressing the critical shortage of building materials while creating jobs and income in the region.

"With strong partnerships with organisations like AfDB, we know we are not too far from finding lasting solutions," Ba said.

The agreement will now see Shelter Afrique begin a stronger second quarter of the year having already signed a Sh439 million line with Agence Francaise de Developpment (AFD) for its social housing programme and floating a bond.

In October last year, the firm raised Sh3.5 billion through a bond issue to fund low cost urban housing projects across the country, being the sixth time Shelter Afrique was tapping into the Kenya debt capital markets.

"The housing industry is experiencing exponential growth and urbanisation and the bulge of a growing middle class which all hamper the provision of adequate housing in Africa. AfDB would like to call on government, the private sector and all interested parties to rise to the occasion and address housing as it was a key requirement for development," Regional Director for AfDB Gabriel Negatu said.

Shelter-Afrique is owned by 44 African governments, the African Development Bank and the African Reinsurance Corporation.

It currently has an active portfolio of projects in more than 30 African countries.

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