IDB leverages crowdfunding to part-finance projects in Africa and Central Asia

As it made science, technology and innovation a cornerstone in its renewed strategy presented last year, the IDB is leveraging fintech by tapping into crowdfunding to fund a pilot project in aid of Nigeria.

As part of a US$238.1 million-worth financing shared between Benin, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Kyrgyzstan for the development of housing, sanitation, irrigation, and health projects, the IDB will use crowdfunding to unlock energy access finance amounting to US$1.11 million.

The IDB did not mention the name of the platform it will be using, but the multilateral development bank has partnered in 2018 with Malaysia-based Islamic venture builder Ethis Ventures to raise US$1 million for its Alliance to Fight Avoidable Blindness program and its Reverse Linkage project between Suriname and Malaysia in the area of rice production.

Fintech has become central in the IDB Group’s strategy with the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector launching Yemen’s fintech-based BRAVE program in January 2019 to enhance the resilience of SMEs in Yemen, while working with a Tunisian institution on an SME crowdfunding project.

“The IDB pays significant attention to projects that will create decent jobs, promote health and sanitation, as well as an enabling environment for the proliferation of technological advancement that will transform the economies of our member countries. We are keen to ensure self-sufficiency in food production. This is part of the strategies for the realization of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development,” Dr Bandar Hajjar, the president of the IDB, said.

Besides crowdfunding, more common financing facilities have been approved and Nigeria will receive US$100 million to improve the delivery and uptake of malaria prevention and treatment activities to reduce the overall burden of the disease in the country from 27% to less than 15%.
A project aiming to provide access to decent housing, connected to urban services (potable water, sewage, electricity), to more than 20,000 inhabitants in Benin by the end of 2024 will benefit from the IDB’s support to the tune of US$69.1 million.
In the Ivory Coast, the IDB will disburse US$47.86 million to help achieve a sustainable improvement in the provision of sanitation services in Abidjan and 11 secondary cities by eliminating the uncontrolled dumping of sludge.

A total of US$20 million will be channeled to Kyrgyzstan’s Issyk-Kul and Naryn regions to improve the livelihood of the rural population through sustainable agriculture development and water resources management with adaptation to climate change. It also aims to support 13,200 farmers in providing access to improved agricultural infrastructure (irrigation and crop storage) and create 2,000 new jobs at on-farm and off-farm levels.


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