Official launch of the AFD’s SUNREF program in Namibia
During a visit to Windhoek, the French Development Agency (AFD) launched the SUNREF (Sustainable Use of Natural Resources and Environment Finance) program through the signing of a loan agreement with two local banks to finance green projects and a grant agreement with the Environmental Investment Fund (EIF) to host technical assistance.
Materializing the discussions held during the previous AFD missions in Namibia, two loan agreements of 15 million euros each were signed with the Namibian subsidiary of the South African bank FNB and with the local bank Bank Windhoek.
Under the SUNREF program, this 46 million euros green credit line will finance projects in the fields of renewable energies, sustainable agriculture and green tourism in Namibia.
- From left to right : Olivier Horsthemke, business segment’s head of FNB Namibia, Martha Stein-Sochas, AFD’s regional director, H.E. Jacqueline Bassa-Mazzoni, French Ambassador and Michelle van Wyk, FNB Namibia’s chief treasurer.
- From left to right : Claire Hobbs, Bank Windhoek’s chief treasurer, Baronice Hans, Bank WIndhoek’s managing director, Martha Stein-Sochas, AFD’s regional director and H.E. Jacqueline Bassa-Mazzoni, French Ambassador.
The AFD also signed a 1 million euros grant agreement with the Environmental Investment Fund (EIF), an institution under supervision of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism, to provide technical assistance and support the partner banks with regard to the SUNREF program implementation. This signature is the concrete result of the letter of intent signed by the two institutions on 29 November 2016, outside of President Geingob’s official visit to France. The minister of Environment and Tourism, Hon. Pohamba Shifeta, attended the signing ceremony and reiterated Namibia’s dedication to meeting the commitments made upon ratification of the Paris Agreement.
- From left to right : H.E. Jacqueline Bassa-Mazzoni, French Ambassador, Martha Stein-Sochas, AFD’s regional director, Benedict Libanda, executive director of the EIF and Hon. Pohamba Shifeta, minister of Environment and Tourism.
This AFD mission was therefore an opportunity to reaffirm the joint commitment of Namibia and France to fight against climate change. It was also in line with the visit of the Namibian President Hage Geingob to France last November, both economically and diplomatically.