Mitsubishi UFJ, Afreximbank Partner on $520M COVID-19 Response Facility


Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. (MUFG) and the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) have closed a 520 million dollars facility to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 pandemic.

They announced this in a joint statement issued by both organisations in Cairo, Egypt on Monday, adding that it was the first to be covered by Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI).

According to it, NEXI’s proactive support for the facility was agreed on the basis of Afreximbank being a strategic partner, participation from Japanese investors and the deal contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

It added that MUFG was the sole mandated lead arranger, bookrunner, agent and NEXI coordinator on the transaction.

It also said that the facility fully aligned with Afreximbank’s strategic priorities in the area of intra and extra African trade and investment, export manufacturing and industrialisation.

“These objectives find common ground with NEXI’s objectives of supporting sustainable African growth and development in line with the Tokyo International Conference of African Development (TICAD) objectives.

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“Afreximbank will use the proceeds toward its Pandemic Trade Impact Mitigation Facility (PATIMFA) which was launched in March 2020 to help African sovereigns, commercial banks and corporates to weather the impact of the crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The statement added that the facility would support the bank’s interventions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

It would also be used to finance trade and trade related investments which contributes to the sustainable development of the socioeconomic, health, manufacturing, environmental, agriculture and agri-related sectors across the 51 African member states of Afreximbank.

“Working together with NEXI and Afreximbank, MUFG was able to access under-utilised Japanese liquidity, resulting in an extremely successful outcome of distribution to Japanese investors, many of which were new investors for Afreximbank.

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“This follows in the footsteps of two Samurai loans for Afreximbank in 2017 and 2019, including the largest ever Samurai loan for an African issuer.”

Christopher Marks, Head of Emerging Markets, MUFG, said that the facility marked a watershed moment for African institutions looking to tap the Japanese investor pool.

“It goes without saying that we are delighted to have once again, partnered with Afreximbank, who are not only leading the way in terms of bringing in new investment and growth opportunities to Africa, but also providing vital support to the region in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

Amr Kamel, Afreximbank’s Executive Vice President for Business Development and Corporate Banking, said that the successful implementation of the facility was a testimony to the great collaboration and innovative approach adopted by MUFG, NEXI and Afreximbank.

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He said it also demonstrated the power of using public resources to leverage private financing for development.

“We expect strong and sustainable development outcomes by effective implementation of this facility, including employment creation, increased economic activities and increase in tax revenues for fiscally strained governments, amongst other outcomes,” he said.

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