African Development Bank and Interpeace join hands to promote Peace Finance in Africa

October 3, 2023

The African Development Bank and Interpeace, an international organisation for peacebuilding based in Switzerland, today signed a memorandum of understanding to jointly promote economic investment and social development that positively impacts peace.

The memorandum is accompanied by a practical work plan with goals and outcome targets, underscoring the innovative partnership between the Bank and the Finance for Peace initiative by Interpeace.

The signing ceremony took place during the Africa Resilience Forum currently underway in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. The MoU was signed by the Bank’s Vice-President for Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade, and a member of Interpeace’s governing board Elhadj As Sy.

Ambassador Deike Potzel, Director General for Crisis Prevention, Stabilisation, Peacebuilding and Humanitarian Assistance at the German Federal Foreign Office, which supports Interpeace’s Finance for Peace initiative, attended the signing.

Akin-Olugbade highlighted the importance of pursuing innovative approaches to support peace and security on the continent.

“The African Development Bank is pioneering these efforts through the Security-Indexed Investment Bond (SIIB) Initiative, endorsed at the AU Heads of State Summit in February 2022”, she told participants, adding that the proposed bonds aim to raise additional financing at scale, including through capital markets, to mitigate structural drivers of violence and conflict. The initiative also aims to offset the fiscal implications of elevated security sector spending.

“The Finance for Peace initiative by Interpeace, supported by Germany, complements the Bank’s own efforts in this space, as it aims to develop protocols and pilots around peace finance, including for a peace bond asset class”, Akin-Olugbade said.

Elhadj As Sy said: “Interpeace is delighted to formalise the partnership with the African Development Bank. “This strong collaboration between the AfDB and Interpeace affirms our joint commitment to catalyse private and public capital to work for a more inclusive, equitable and peaceful world”, he said.

“This partnership will demonstrate to the wider multilateral and international development financing system the need, benefits, potential and practicality of Peace Finance approaches on the continent and beyond. It will grow Peace Finance as a thematic investing approach, by developing early and successful pipeline development of Peace Finance and by fostering on-the-ground networks and capacities in Peace Finance in Africa.”

The areas for collaboration outlined by the Memorandum of Understanding, in accordance with the parties’ mandates, include:
– Technical and capacity strengthening for embedding Peace Finance approaches that realise peace impact into AfDB’s sovereign and non-sovereign operations and policy dialogue.
– Advisory support and collaboration to develop a pipeline of Peace Finance structures that realise peace impacts.
– Multistakeholder engagement and field building for wider political and investor support for Peace Finance.

As part of the partnership, a joint research project on peace-positive investment opportunities in Mozambique was launched by the two organisations recently.

African Development Bank
The overarching objective of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group is to spur sustainable economic development and social progress in its regional member countries (RMCs), thus contributing to poverty reduction. The Bank Group achieves this objective by mobilizing and allocating resources for investment in RMCs; and providing policy advice and technical assistance to support development efforts.

Interpeace is an international organisation for peacebuilding. With 30 years of experience, it has implemented a broad range of peacebuilding programmes in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Interpeace tailors its approach to each society and ensures that its work is locally designed and driven. Interpeace also assists the international community – especially the United Nations – to play a more effective role in peacebuilding, based on Interpeace’s expertise in field-based work at grassroots level. Interpeace is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and has offices around the world.

Finance for Peace
Finance for Peace is a multistakeholder initiative of Interpeace, seeking systemic change in how private and public investment supports peace in developing, fragile and conflict-affected contexts. It aims to create networked approaches that can co-develop the market frameworks, standards, political support networks, partnerships and knowledge required to scale up Peace Finance – investment that intentionally seeks to improve conditions for peace.

Finance for Peace brings together investors, industry, norm-setting entities, Development Finance Institutions (DFIs), governments, peacebuilding and development actors, civil society and local communities to further peace-positive investment. By enabling the creation of a market for peace-enhancing finance, it aims to reduce risks for both investors and communities and achieve outcomes that are bankable and advance peace. By creating standards and guidance for Peace Finance, as well as key knowledge and innovative solutions, the initiative will help to create true additionality to investors, as well as more inclusive development.

Finance for Peace is supported by the German Federal Foreign Office (GFFO) and builds on feasibility research supported by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO) on a new sustainable investment category called Peace Bonds.

Media contacts:

African Development Bank:
Amba Mpoke-Bigg
Communication and External Relations Department

Luvini Ranasinghe
Head of Communications, Interpeace
+41 79 475 64 95

Finance for Peace initiative:
Emilia Hinkkanen
Communications Advisor, Finance for Peace
+41 78 301 27 90