SVG to become major logistics hub for Afreximbank
Nigerian Delegation addressing the media on Saturday evening at La Vue Hotel. From left: Former Nigerian president Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, and President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) Dr Benedict Okey Oramah. (photo by Robertson S. Henry)
Front Page
August 8, 2023

SVG to become major logistics hub for Afreximbank

St Vincent and the Grenadines is to become a major logistics hub for the African Export-Import Bank which opened its regional headquarters in Barbados last week.

Speaking at a press briefing held at La Vue Hotel on Saturday evening, President of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) Dr Benedict Okey Oramah revealed that discussions are being held to make St Vincent and the Grenadines a major logistics hub for the bank, in terms of the development of ports, industrial parks, and cruise ship handling facilities.

President Oramah was part of a delegation which included former Nigerian President Chief Olusegun Obasanjo which paid a special one-day visit to St Vincent and the Grenadines on Saturday August 5.

In his address, the bank president outlined the bank’s interest in funding such projects in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

“Today we visited here and we began to discuss concretely how Afreximbank can support the economy of St Vincent and the Grenadines,” Oramah told journalists.

“We discussed extensively the plans to make this country a major logistics hub in terms of redevelopment of ports, development of industrial parks, and the expansion of cruise ship handling capacities.”

Saturday’s visit came one day after the opening of the Afreximbank regional headquarters, in Barbados on Friday August 4, 2023.

Oramah added that these are areas that the Afreximbank expressed strong interest not only to provide financing, “but also to bring the investors that can work together with the appropriate authorities and the

government to make sure that these are delivered in a timely manner that brings the full benefits the government is seeking.”

According to the bank president, “Afreximbank supports the private sector. The biggest beneficiaries are the private sector because we are a trade bank … to promote trade and investment in Africa and the Caribbean.”

The head of the newly established regional headquarters of the bank, who is yet to be named, is expected to visit St Vincent and the Grenadines later this year, “and during that visit will receive assurances from the honourable Prime Minister for a road show that will involve the private sector, so the businesses will know of the programmes and facilities available to them. We are hoping that the instruments used to develop hotels and tourism facilities and the other services that are important to the island here.”

Oramah added that the Afreximbank is looking forward to the next few years not only supporting the economy, but also promoting trade and investment between the continent of Africa and the Caribbean.

The visit by the Nigeria’s former president comes after both he and Vincentian Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves discussed reparations, Afro-Caribbean integration, international trade and other issues at a panel discussion in Barbados, dubbed ‘Three Legends, Three Perspectives, One Conversation: Reparations and Beyond’.

The three legends on the panel were Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, former Prime Minister of Jamaica P.J. Patterson, and former president of Nigeria Chief Olusegun Obasanjo.