Opening remarks by Sérgio Pimenta, IFC Vice President for Africa, Africa Financial Industry Summit


Lomé, Togo, November 15, 2023

Note: the protocol at the start of the speech will be adapted taking into account the latest updates (if other official representatives) on the opening ceremony.

  • Excellence, Mr. President of the Republic,
  • Madam President of the National Assembly,
  • Madam Prime Minister,
  • Dear Amir, dear Rama, dear partners of Jeune Afrique Media Group,
  • Honorable representatives of the economic and financial press,
  • Honorable guests, in your ranks and capacities,

Allow me to welcome you to this 3rd edition of AFIS, the African Financial Industry Summit - it is a great pleasure for me, on behalf of the IFC, to welcome you here.

This year, and for the second time in a row, this event is organized in Lomé, under the aegis of Togo with which the SFI and Jeune Afrique Media Group are associated. My thanks go first of all to the Togolese authorities for their generous hospitality and their renewed trust, as well as to the Jeune Afrique Group for this excellent collaboration which continues, ever more ambitious.

Indeed, we are pleased to see that even more of you have responded - a sign, I believe, of the growing interest in the development of the financial sector in Africa. Also a big thank you to all of you here!


We are meeting today in a difficult context. Africa, like the rest of the world, remains faced with an economic environment marked, among other things, by a global credit crisis, historically high interest rates and a slowdown in international financing.

The lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, conflicts in Europe and the Middle East, soaring inflation and the growing impact of climate change are having serious repercussions on the continent's economies.

Faced with these challenges, we must do everything we can to promote sustainable, inclusive and green economic growth in Africa.

The financial sector has an essential role to play in the deployment of this model. This involves supporting the emergence of a more inclusive and more connected Africa, ensuring food security in the region, improving access to housing and ensuring the continent's energy transition – on all these issues, concrete and rapid responses are expected. So how can the African financial industry provide answers? The World Bank Group's strategy, adopted in Marrakech and structured around 5 pillars - Human Capital, Prosperity, Planet, Infrastructure and Digitization - paves the way. Online with