Communiqué & Press Release
Biarritz / Washington DC / Pretoria, 27 August 2019, 12.00 pm CET
The World Pensions Council (WPC), Africa Investor (Ai) and the Singapore Economic Forum (SEF) have held the G7 Pensions Roundtable in Biarritz, 26 August 2019, in association with the CFA Society of New York Asset Owners Series (AOS).
This high-level seminar brought together a select group of pension board members, trustees and policy makers from across G7 nations + Australia and South Africa.
G7 Pensions Roundtable co-chairs, Nicolas J. Firzli, Director-General, World Pensions Forum (WPC), Chairman, Singapore Economic Forum (SEF) and Hubert Danso, CEO, Africa Investor, Board Chair, CFA New York Asset Owners Advisory Council, took stock of the renewed public policy interest for environmental sustainability, gender equity and social inclusiveness from the part of G7 leaders.”
“We salute the approval by the G7 of a supplemental package of $251 million in support of the African Development Bank’s Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) initiative designed to support women entrepreneurs in the Continent.”
“Women Empowerment (‘SDG5’) in the emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs) of Africa clearly constitutes a cross-cutting socio-cultural and financial goal: private sector women entrepreneurs can play a truly transformative role in their respective jurisdictions, as long as they are provided with sufficient start-up capital and truly sustainable, long-term financing mechanism.”
“We believe that G7 and Australian pension, sovereign wealth fund and insurance investors, which represent collectively more than 80% of the overall assets owned by institutional investors worldwide, are ready to step-up their investment in Africa-focused, women-led small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and the specialist private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) funds which invest in them, as long as they are provided with the requisite level of co-investment capital, credit-enhanced loan facilitation structures and solid default guarantees mechanisms from the part of G7 governments.”
“From that perspective, the quarter-of-a-billion-dollars mark reached by the G7 leaders falls short of both the crying need of African women entrepreneurs and the largely untapped potential of their pent-up contribution the Continent’s socio-economic development.”
“We call on G7 leaders to do more in the coming quarters leading up to next year’s summit and will work jointly with our pension and sovereign fund colleagues to present concrete, actionable proposals to the 2020 Miami G7 Summit steering committee.”