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Africities 8:  Meeting of mayors – preparation of the African Cities Development Fund – ACDF

Introduced by Parks Tau, President of UCLG, and by Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, Secretary General of UCLG Africa, the meeting of mayors has made it possible to take stock of the preparatory process for the creation of the African Cities Development Fund – ACDF.  The mayors and presidents of local authorities had decided to do this in Africities 7.

Parks Tau clarified the vision he had introduced in his introductory address of the Africities 8 summit, detailing the reasons and the main steps to establish the fund. The autonomous access of cities to financing is a major challenge for real decentralization.

The 40 participants validated the main conclusions stemming from the work of expert groups and from the meetings with potential partners, including African development banks. These options are   :

–           The choice of an organization that will ensure the control of mayors and presidents of local authorities over the fund and the independence of financial management from any political pressure. This management will be provided by professionals from the banking sector.

–           The importance of pooling resources in all the dimensions of the management of the fund.

–           The high priority given to securing excellent financial credibility, as a condition of access to the financial markets at competitive rates.

–           The need for close cooperation with institutions and programs that support local authorities to improve their financial management.

–           The indispensable support of States to authorize and facilitate the participation of cities and local authorities in the fund: subscription to the capital and then loans.

The exchange of views and ideas made it possible to specify points of attention, to be treated within the framework of the financial, legal and taxation studies which must now be conducted.

The participants validated the roadmap in all its components.

The steering and financing of the stage that will lead to the start of operations within 4 years will be provided by a club of founding cities and local authorities.