Ghana to Use ATI to Access Long Term Capital - Finance Minister

20 February 2020

The government will explore the possibility of using the Africa Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) insurance to access long term capital to finance its developmental projects, Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta has said.

Ghana, according to the ATI can secure up to $10 billion long term capital in the next decade through its insurance facilities.

Mr Ofori-Atta who disclosed this in a speech read on his behalf by the Minister of Planning, Professor George Gyan-Baffour, during the launch of the operations of ATI in Ghana, said other West African countries have used the ATI insurance to attract commercial financing.

As part of the programme, Ghana was presented with its membership certificate to indicate its ownership of the Agency.

ATI, a multilateral and pan-African institution, was formed in 2001 with backing of African governments, COMESA, the World Bank and African Development Bank, to provide insurance guarantees to help African member governments attract investments and spur trade and increase access to credit.

Ghana became a full member of the ATI in October 2019 with a share of $17.6 million that was provided by the financial support of KfW through the German government.

ATI last year insured a portfolio of transactions across Africa valued at $6.4 billion.

Mr Ofori-Atta indicated that the International Monetary Fund had approved the strategy of using the ATI platform to raise long term financing.

"The IMF has looked favourable on this strategy in other countries and we look forward to exploring this possibility," he said.

Mr Ofori-Atta said ATI had grown to become one of the respected international organisations.

He said the government would rely on the the ATI's Regional Liquidity Support Facility which was focused on renewable energy for green energy solutions to mitigate the impact of climate change.

The acting Chief Executive Officer of ATI, John Lentaigne said the Agency's exposure to Ghana last year stood at $1 million.

He said the ATI was ready to support the government's industrialisation agenda in particular and the development of the country in general.

"Ghana is currently the fastest growing economies in the world. This huge feat for Ghana and ATI is delighted to welcome such an important African economy into its membership. We are looking forward to supporting the government's 10-point industrialisations strategy and other strategies aimed at strengthening the economy to ultimately create more jobs and a sustainable future," Mr Lentaigne said.

He said ATI could help Ghana to raise more than $10 billion in the next 10 years through its insurance facilities.

The acting CEO explained political risk remained a challenge to Africa and accounted for the reasons why investors look elsewhere instead of Africa.

He said it was to address that challenge the ATI was established, adding that with the establishment of the Agency European Life Insurance and Japanese Pension Fund Companies, could participate in Africa's capital and debt markets.

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