Press Releases


ECOWAS infrastructure de-risking and credit enhancement consultative forum

21 Oct, 2022

Accra, 13th – 14th   OCTOBER, 2022

One of the key objectives of the ECOWAS Strategic Vision 2050 is the development of Infrastructure to foster better regional economic integration and development. Given the region’s infrastructure gap, it is important to examine regional options and strategies to enhance the delivery of infrastructure and related services to accelerate the Community’s development. To this end, the 60th Ordinary Session of the Summit of ECOWAS Heads of States approved the ECOWAS Regional Infrastructure Masterplan.  The ECOWAS Regional Infrastructure Masterplan consist of 201 regional projects comprising of 146 investment projects and 55 “soft” projects (technical studies, project preparation activities, institutional reforms and capacity building). To support the implementation of the Masterplan, the 60th Ordinary Session of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government also adopted the Regional PPP Policy and Guidelines to attract and facilitate private financing in infrastructure.


Within the framework of implementation of the Regional PPP Policy and Guidelines, the PPDU launched the Regional PPP Stakeholders Forum.   The purpose of the forum, amongst others, was to bring stakeholders together to agree on actionable recommendations to support project development, financing, implementation and mutual assistance/ collaboration between Member States. To this end, the inaugural session of the PPP Forum was held on 8-10 June 2022 in Dakar, Senegal.


A key recommendation of the Dakar forum was to increase the appetite of regional and international investors in infrastructure projects in the region. In line with this recommendation, the PPDU organized a consultative Forum on ECOWAS Infrastructure De-risking and Credit Enhancement held from 13th – 14th October, 2022 in Accra, Ghana.  The aim of the forum was to engage international and regional investment rating agencies and financing entities providing credit enhancement/ guarantees to increase the appetite of regional and international investors and to help the ECOWAS and Member States prepare more bankable investment projects.


The objectives of the consultative forum were as follows:

  1. Discuss the challenges faced by Member State Governments, lenders, insurers, pension funds in the development of regional infrastructure.
  2. Obtain a clear understanding of what drives credit agencies rating methodology so authorities, utilities and projects can assess the necessary steps to improve their credit rating.
  3. Obtain information on available de-risking products that can be used to improve the credit rating of infrastructure projects.
  4. Identify ways to promote participation of local and international private sector in regional infrastructure development.


Participation at the Stakeholders was extensive, in attendance were representatives of Ministries of Finance, National PPP Units and Project Directors from Ministries in Charge of various regional projects. In addition, representatives of Development and Financing Partners – African Development Bank (AfDB), West African Development Bank (BOAD/ URDPPP), World Association of PPP Units and Practitioners (WAPPP), Private Investors (United Capital, Infra Credit) and the West African Insurers Consultative Association (WAICA) –  were also in attendance.


In addition to presentation made by various international entities such as Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) and Standard and Poors, the Forum was also a platform to showcase two regional projects – The Abidjan-Lagos Corridor Highway and The Amilcar Cabral Submarine Cable Project. The presentation of these two flagship projects enabled the appreciation of the forum on the key features of the projects and provoked discussions on the key investment issues that should be tackled in their project preparation which will serve as a template for future regional projects.


The forum concluded with a number of key recommendations including the following;


  1. ECOWAS and Member States to consider consortia of insurers, determining minimum entry rating criteria for participating entities, as a means of mobilizing local insurance.
  2. ECOWAS and Member States to take necessary measures to unblock or remove legal and regulatory hurdles preventing/ limiting local financing sources (such as pension funds and insurance companies) from investing in the infrastructure sector or across borders.
  3. Emphasized the need to promote credible local/regional credit rating agencies with clear, predictable and transparent methodology as a means of improving credit perceptions of the region
  4. Agreed on the necessity to set aside seed money for project preparation to facilitate the preparation of bankable projects.
  5. Future fora to share experiences of successful PPP transactions from Member States.

Member States