OPEC Fund declares $100 million Africa trade finance program

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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The OPEC Fund for International Development (Opec Fund) said it has raised its trade finance program from $50 to $100 million to facilitate international financial services firm Natixis to expand support for trade and development in Africa.

The unfunded risk-sharing contract sees the OPEC Fund guarantee trade finance transactions backed by Natixis – part of Groupe BPCE, France’s second-largest retail banking group – in developing countries.

The program has encouraged trade transactions such as imports of medical equipment and sugar on the African continent, and in Asia. The original $50 million deal was signed with Natixis in 2018.

Opec Fund Director-General Dr. Abdulhamid Alkhalifa signed the increased agreement with Natixis’ Stephen Menke, Global Head of Marketing and Sales, Trade Syndication and Distribution.

“We are pleased to expand our partnership with Natixis. Both our organizations have ambitious development aspirations and recognize the importance of trade to socio-economic progress.”
Dr. Abdulhamid Alkhalifa
Director-General, OPEC Fund

“This transaction supports Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8 on decent work and economic growth and will improve the livelihoods of many business owners, employees and their families across the African continent,” Dr. Alkhalifa added.

Natixis’ Global Head of Trade and Treasury Solutions Anne-Cécile Delas said: “We are proud to enhance its collaboration with the Opec Fund and to support the growth of trade in emerging countries by means of this partnership.”

“We believe in the economic potential of the emerging markets, which we support for a sustainable improvement of social and economic development,” he stated.

The OPEC Fund’s Trade Finance Facility helps private enterprises and governments by promoting the import and export of strategic commodities and capital goods. $ 4.2 billion has been approved under this facility since 2006.