Maputo — The African Export and Import Bank (Afreximbank) has expressed an interest in financing agro-processing projects in Mozambique.
The director of the bank, Gift Samwaka, was speaking on Wednesday after a visit to the Maputo headquarters of the body that represents Mozambican employers, the Confederation of Business Associations (CTA).
Cited in Thursday's issue of the independent daily “O Pais”, Samwaka said “One of the areas we give most priority to is agro-processing, because that is where value can most easily be added in African economies, seeking to create a trade dynamic between African countries”.
He gave the example of Mozambican cashew nuts. He believed that there should no export of raw cashews. Instead all the nuts should be processed inside Mozambique, and only be exported in the form of ready-to-eat processed kernels.
Afreximbank is seeking to set up a branch in Mozambique, and hopes to offer lines of credit to some Mozambican companies in the agro-processing area. He did not say how much funding the bank is prepared to put into such credit lines.
“There's no pre-definition of the value of the lines of financing”, said Samwaka. “It's a reaction to internal initiatives in accordance with the needs presented by the companies and the projects”.
In the past, Mozambique has benefitted from 90 million dollars worth of credit from Afreximbank.
The bank, headquartered in Cairo, was set up in 1993 as a multilateral organisation with the purpose of promoting and expanding trade within Africa, and between Africa and the rest of the world.
According to its mission statement, Afreximbank intends “to stimulate a consistent expansion, diversification and development of African trade while operating as a first class, profit-oriented, socially responsible financial institution and a centre of excellence in African trade matters”.