The re-appointment of Professor Benedict Oramah as President, African Export and Import Bank (Afrexim) is a deserving reward for excellent performance in growing African trade and economy, Deputy President, Pan – African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PACCI), Prince Adetokunbo Kayode has disclosed.
In a congratulatory message sent to the President of the Cairo based bank, the PACCI top leader said African businesses positively felt the impact of many initiatives Afrexim introduced under Oramah’s Presidency, affirming that “the re-appointment is a reconfirmation of the faith shareholders and general stakeholders have in the leadership of Professor Oramah.
“The flagship programme of the bank, the Inter-African Trade Fair (IATF), has immeasurably boosted regional trade among nations. IATF remains a critical platform for African trade interaction as we watch towards the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA. Prof Oramah, the initiator of the programme has enhanced the capacity of African businesses to bond together, creating a network of inter-related businesses across the continent.
“His drive to fast track African infrastructural growth ahead of AfCFTA led to the expansion of funding for railway sector through Russian dedicated financing through Afrexim bank. The unique facility already running deepens African-Russian trade relations. Your efforts generated so much interest outside Africa that the Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin awarded you the highest state honour. Previous winners of the honour include former US secretary of State, Rex Tillerson; former Malaysian Prime Minister, Mahathis Mohammad and former United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki- Moon.
“You have grown the fortune and asset of the bank by more than 26 percent and you created financing opportunities to accelerate the growth of industry and trade in Africa. Your support to our Manufacturers’ Association is commendable. You introduced Virtual African Trade Desk as an online meeting platform for African businesses. Your achievements are in legion”, Prince Kayode said .
While urging the Afrexim boss not to relent in his innovative leadership, Prince Kayode specifically tasked him to expand his mobilisation of inter-African trade through further partnership with Chambers of Commerce and Industry across Africa.
“We welcome Prof Oramah’s re-appointment. We are elated. I assure him of closer support of African Chamber movement even as we task him on exploring further options for closer relationship with the African Chamber group and its national chapters across Africa”, the ACCI President said.