Bank group governors for central Africa recently met to discuss regional integration in Africa with discussions including a review of national and regional projects.

AfDB vice president and chief economist, Célestin Monga. Image credit: Twitter

AfDB vice president and chief economist, Célestin Monga. Image credit: Twitter

Bank leaders also discussed the foundations for further development of their region. During his address, Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank (AfDB) said, “Your presence at the bank’s headquarters matters. So is your voice. It is encouraging hearing you.”

AfDB vice president and chief economist Célestin Monga, gave an economic overview of the continent and more specifically of central Africa, highlighting the main challenges to inclusive growth, peace and security, sound macroeconomic management and stability, the development and strengthening of basic infrastructure and effective regional integration.

Monga also emphasised the need for the states of the region to diversify their economies through agribusiness, fisheries and livestock. Gabon’s governor, Hilaire Machima, echoed this view. “This policy is already bearing fruit, since the government of my country has been working for several years on processing wood within the country. There are currently some 80 wood processing companies in Gabon.”

The governors unanimously gave the AfDB their support.

“We have a bank that innovates. We need significant resources to take Africa and our region forward,” said the bank governor for Cameroon, Alamine Ousmane Mey.

Bank governor for Equatorial Guinea, Lucas Abaga Nchama, stressed the continent’s enormous development needs, saying, “The [bank’s] capital increase is important. Our future lies in regional integration.”

While the bank governor for Chad, Issa Doubragne, added, “We have every reason to be hopeful.”