By; OLIVIA NNOROM
Few days after African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) launched its wholly owned insurance management services subsidiary, AFREXInsure, in Ghana, the Institution has just introduced Africa Trade Gateway (ATG).
Africa Trade Gateway is a suite of five digital platforms that have been designed as a single window to enable the Bank better deliver on its mandate by providing critical services to support and promote African trade and the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).
The inauguration was held on Tuesday in Accra, on the sidelines of the ongoing 30th Afreximbank Annual Meetings (AAM2023), where MANSA (due diligence platform), the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS), the TRADAR Club, the Africa Trade Exchange (ATEX) and ATG Connect, were introduced as the five platforms that make-up the ATG digital ecosystem.
The event was witnessed by key personnels in the industry including Ernest Addison, governor-Bank of Ghana and Emily Mburu-Ndoria, director-directorate of Trade in Services, Investment, IPR and Digital Trade, AfCFTA who represented Wamkele Mene, Secretary General, AfCFTA.
Kanayo Awani, Executive vice president of Intra-African trade bank of Afreximbank who launched the Africa Trade Gateway said that Afreximbank’s digital evolution was part of its deliberate strategic response to address Africa’s key challenges, accelerate the pace of development and foster economic prosperity for using and applying digital technologies and business models.
Awani noted that this initiative mirrors other projects of the bank in addressing clearly identified challenges and barriers for potential African trade and investments.
She however, highlighted that the ATG took higher steps because of its customer-centric nature, stressing that it will consolidate results, maximise net effects, achieve greater efficiencies, drive higher synergistic value, quicken regional integration, extend and create new access markets and accelerate digital economy in Africa.
The most interesting part?
Africa Trade Gateway has made it possible for customers to complete all their transactions within one window,
The innovation is aimed to answer the needs of businesses, governments and stakeholders by enabling trade, commerce and investment, Awani said.
She commended her colleagues for their hard work and partners for successfully bringing these platforms from concept to reality.
The launch ceremony included presentations on the services available under the various digital platforms and a panel discussion by the heads of the platforms during which they discussed the services they offered in support of trade across Africa and the implementation of the AfCFTA
Here is a description of the five digital platforms that make up the ATG ecosystem;
MANSA, Africa’s due diligence platform, provides a single source of primary data required for the conduct of customer due diligence on African entities, financial institutions, corporates and SMEs.
It also provides a complementary collection of information on investment in Africa, country profiles and traded products/services of African countries.
PAPSS was established to enable efficient payment for intra-African trade in national currencies, promoting intra-African trade, minimising risk and contributing to financial integration across Africa.
In July 2019, African Union heads of state meeting in Niamey, adopted PAPSS as the payment and settlement system to support the implementation of the AfCFTA. It currently operates out of Cairo.
TRADAR Club, is member-driven network aimed at empowering international businesses and executives to transform trade and investments in Africa through trusted trade intelligence and advisory services through innovative digital tools and networking opportunities, helping members to discover new markets; grow their business; save time; access dedicated expert support; post and respond to new business opportunities; network; meet business/trading partners, etc.
Membership is open to global industry leaders, African and foreign businesses, intergovernmental organisations, policy makers and others committed to unlocking growth and development in Africa.
ATEX is a B2B and B2G e-commerce platform launched at the 54th Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development in Dakar in May 2022, to help small and medium scale and large African businesses to tap into new markets in Africa and to facilitate the optimisation of their supply chains.
It enables procurement in bulk for basic commodities to ensure access to suppliers in a transparent manner.
ATG Connect serves to connect business service providers across Africa.
It provides freight and logistics connectivity solutions which allow for frictionless connecting and matching of freight/ logistics requests with freight and logistics providers listed on the platform.
Customers can get quotes for the pickup and delivery of goods to and from any location in Africa at a very competitive price.