African Development Bank president Akinwumi Adesina has called for investors to join the partnership platform offered by the Africa Investment Forum and “grab the chance to fast track the continent’s investment and development agenda”.

His message was a call to regional and global investors, financial sector leaders and prominent government officials attending a plenary session entitled “Delivering As One for Africa” at the forum.

“We must fast-track Agenda 2063, to deliver as one” Adesina urges. “We are impatient to get there.”

The Africa Investment Forum is the first ever transaction-based forum, “This is not an event. It is a platform where governments, private sector, investors, and project promotors come together. We develop quality bankable projects, de-risk them and actually make sure it happens,” Adesina says.

‘We are committed to fast track development. We know countries do not develop from aid but by the discipline of investment. We require broad-based partnerships and collective effort with the private sector and institutional investors.”

Panel members shared their vision and perspectives on investments in Africa and stressed the urgent need to transition to a new way of working together. This will take scaling up, speeding up and synergizing.

Panelists acknowledged the critical role of African leaders who set the tone in terms of policy and creating conducive environments for businesses to thrive.

The Africa Investment Forum is part of a bigger drive by the African Development Bank to tap into the vast pool of global capital to fund its ambitious plan to transform Africa.

The bank estimates the continent needs between $130-billion and $170-billion a year to fund its critical development needs. Due to tightening budgets, traditional funding sources such as national governments and development institutions like the African Development Bank alone are unable to meet Africa’s capital needs.

Global institutional investors and asset owners control $131-trillion Asset Under Management, of which Adesina said, even one percent would be sufficient to close the infrastructure financing gap, estimated at between $68-billion to $108-billion.