The African Development Bank and the Coalition for Dialogue on Africa (CoDA) have launched a three-year support project to improve regional coherence and coordination in responding to illicit financial flows. The project will assist African stakeholders actively engaged in stemming such flows in order to improve African countries’ domestic revenue mobilization.
On March 7, the African Union headquarters hosted the launch of the African Financial Integrity and Accountability Support Project (AFIAP). The project aims to improve regional coordination in combating illicit financial flows as well as oversight and accountability of public finances in African countries for optimal revenue mobilization and management. It will support the coordinated implementation of the High-Level Panel on Illicit Financial Flows’ recommendations, as well as the implementation of joint international taxation strategies and initiatives.
The grant will help CoDA in its role as the secretariat for the African Union’s High-Level Panel on IFFs, the Joint Secretariat of the Consortium to Stem IFFs from Africa, and the annual African Fiscal Policy Forum. The assistance will promote a coherent African response to illicit flows, in accordance with the AU Assembly Special Declaration on IFFs adopted in January 2015, and will advance Africa’s continent-wide asset recovery agenda, as encapsulated in the Common African Position on Asset Recovery (CAPAR) adopted in February 2020.
CoDA, the African Union Commission’s Departments of Economic Development, Trade, Tourism, Industry and Minerals, and Political Affairs, Peace and Security, will carry out this task in collaboration with other national, regional, and global actors.
The project aims to strengthen resilience in selected African Development Bank member countries, with a particular emphasis on public sector capacities in low-income countries, through training, policy research, and advocacy activities.
The Bank’s assistance is consistent with the goals of its Strategy for Economic Governance in Africa (2021-2025), its policy and strategic framework and action plan to prevent Illicit Financial Flows in Africa (2017-2021, extended to 2023), and the “High Five” goal of “Improving the Quality of Life” for Africans. It is consistent with ongoing similar support to regional organizations aimed at stemming illicit flows from Africa.
Abdul Kamara, the Bank’s Deputy Director-General for Eastern Africa Regional and Business Delivery Office, and Souad Aden-Osman, the Executive Director of the CoDA / HLP Secretariat, were present at the ceremony. Several other Secretariat, African Union Commission, and Bank officials were also present.
Abdul expressed satisfaction with the project, noting that it is in line with the High-Level Panel’s mandate to promote a coordinated response of the Bank’s regional member countries in ensuring that policies and practices in combating financial crime, tax evasion, and money laundering are mobilized. “This project will contribute to promoting greater efficiency in public financial management in order to boost revenue mobilization and management, in addition to combating illicit financial flows,” Kamara said.
“CoDA appreciates the AfDB’s financial assistance. We are eager to collaborate with the Bank to ensure that Phase II of the Panel’s recommendations is well underway. This collaboration with the AfDB is extremely beneficial in this regard, and CoDA is grateful to the President, Management, and Board of the AfDB for their continued support on behalf of its Board of Directors and the High-Level Panel on IFFs from Africa,” Aden-Osman said.