After more than two months of intensive training on infrastructure public-private partnerships (PPPs), the inaugural cohort of the Africa Infrastructure Fellowship Program (AIFP) graduated today. Developed by the Global Infrastructure Hub (GI Hub) and Meridiam with the support of the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, the AIFP is a unique public-private initiative designed to upskill African government infrastructure specialists and enable them to facilitate increased investment in a pipeline of new sustainable infrastructure developments.
The 10 Fellows from five partner countries – Ethiopia, Gabon, Namibia, Cameroon, and Senegal – undertook the program in Paris, France which included academic training at the Ecole des Ponts ParisTech.
“I am glad to have been a part of the first edition of this prestigious training on PPPs. I gained theoretical and practical knowledge on all aspects of PPPs and we had the opportunity to meet experienced practitioners in the field, some with 30 years’ experience. They were all very engaging and open to sharing their experience with us. Our goal now is to implement all the knowledge acquired to improve the procurement and execution of PPPs in our countries,” Moustapha Djitte, AIFP Fellow 2020, Magistrate, Senegalese Public Procurement Regulation Authority.
The Fellows of the 2020 cohort are the first alumni of the AIFP and the initiators of a Pan-African network of experienced PPP practitioners who will share knowledge and experience with other Fellows. A first AIFP alumni meeting will take place in Paris in July 2021 and the next cohort of the AIFP is planned for October 2021.
“The Global Infrastructure Hub is so pleased to be a key partner of the Africa Infrastructure Fellowship Program. I am confident that with their prior knowledge and the new knowledge they have gained from the program, the graduates will be influential in shaping sustainable infrastructure in Africa for decades to come. I look forward to continuing our work with them, to increase the impact and value of the program for their home countries,” the GI Hub’s CEO, Marie Lam-Frendo said.
The AIFP is the first Pan-African training program and offers a unique approach focused on practical knowledge and the sharing of expertise and cooperation between the private and the public sector for infrastructure projects with a tangible social and economic impact within communities. The training included a series of online workshops by multilateral development banks and other public and private entities, the APMG Public-Private Partnerships Certification Program and an internship with one of the program’s private or public sector partners.
Partners of the program include the French Treasury, the International Finance Corporation, MIGA (World Bank Group), the French Development Agency, Société Générale, the African Legal Support Facility, Colas among many others.
“The AIFP Foundation is pleased with the success of the first edition of the programme and will continue to work with its partners to perpetuate and expand the initiative. This pilot session represents an essential first step towards the development of larger projects for capacity building in Africa that could be strongly supported by Europe in other crucial sectors such as health, economy and finance,” Thierry Déau, Chairman of the AIFP Foundation.