Dubai, 12 December 2023 - The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa) announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that marks a significant milestone in their collaborative efforts to support sustainable urban development across the African continent.
In a ceremony held on 10 December 2023 at the COP28 UCLG Africa Pavilion, DBSA Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Boitumelo Mosako and UCLG Africa Secretary General, Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, formalised their commitment to establishing the African Territorial Trade and Investment Agency (ATIA). This is a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) dedicated to financing projects that will enhance the resilience, infrastructure, and overall well-being of African cities. This strategic partnership aims to address the evolving challenges faced by urban areas and to catalyse economic growth and social development.
ATIA will serve as a dedicated financial entity designed to mobilise resources for critical projects, leveraging the combined expertise and networks of DBSA and UCLG Africa. ATIA is poised to play a pivotal role in unlocking opportunities and overcoming barriers to sustainable urban development by pooling financial resources and fostering collaboration.
Key objectives of ATIA include:
Financial Innovation: Introducing innovative financing mechanisms tailored to the needs of African cities to accelerate the implementation of sustainable urban development projects.
Capacity Building: Strengthening the financial and technical capacities of local governments to enable effective project planning, execution, and management.
Knowledge Sharing: Facilitating the exchange of best practices, expertise, and knowledge between DBSA, UCLG Africa, and participating cities to enhance the impact of urban development initiatives.
Sustainable Development Goals: Promoting projects that prioritise environmental sustainability, social inclusivity, and economic resilience, aligning with global sustainable development goals.
Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, Secretary General at UCLG Africa expressed his enthusiasm saying, "Our collaboration with DBSA represents a strategic alignment of our goals and values. Together, we can amplify our impact and address the unique challenges faced by African cities. ATIA is a testament to our collective dedication to the prosperity of urban areas across the continent."
Ms. Mosako echoed MoU’s significance to the DBSA and interest in the collaboration stating, "This partnership between DBSA and UCLG Africa underscores our shared commitment to fostering sustainable urban development in Africa. By establishing ATIA, we aim to provide cities with the financial tools they need to build resilient, inclusive, and thriving communities."
This collaboration represents a major step forward in advancing the shared vision of DBSA and UCLG Africa to create vibrant, resilient, and sustainable urban centers that enhance the quality of life for all citizens.
The DBSA is a leading Development Finance Institution (DFI), wholly owned by the government of South Africa. Established in 1983, the DBSA is mandated to promote economic growth and regional integration by mobilising financial and other resources from national and international private and public sectors for sustainable development projects and programmes in South Africa, SADC, and the wider African continent.
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