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Africa: Climate Change

Volume 461: debated on Thursday 14 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development which projects have been funded by the Investment Climate Facility for Africa; and if he will make a statement. (142535)

The UK accords high priority to investment climate reform in Africa. An improved investment climate will stimulate increased private sector investment and higher rates of sustainable growth, enhancing job creation and enabling Africa to lift itself out of poverty. This is why DFID, along with several other donors and companies with a long-term interest in Africa, supports the Investment Climate Facility for Africa (ICF). The G8 recently reaffirmed their continuing support for the ICF at their Summit meeting in Heiligendamm.

The ICF is an independent pan-African trust that brings together African governments and institutions, the private sector and donor agencies to work collectively to improve the investment climate in Africa.

The ICF’s first major project, the Rwanda Investment Climate Project, was launched on 28 May 2007, encompassing commercial dispute resolution and business and land registration. It is a three-year project in partnership with the Rwanda Government. The ICF is contributing about $9 million to the project.

The ICF is also financing work on customs reform in East Africa in partnership with Business Action for Improved Customs Administration in Africa, as well as a project to speed up the payment of VAT refunds in Southern Africa. ICF expects to announce the approval of other projects under development in the coming months.