Leading global law firm, Hogan Lovells (www.HoganLovells.com), will be the headline legal sponsor at AFC Live (www.AFC-Live.com), the key industry infrastructure investment summit hosted by the Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), that will take place in Abuja on the 15th and 16th May. A number of high level participants from both government and the private sector are expected to attend, including the Presidents of Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda.
With several decades spent working across the continent, covering almost 50 countries and a network of local law firms in all but two African countries, Hogan Lovells has developed an intimate knowledge of the continent’s business environments.
AFC Live has been created to provide a platform to develop solutions that will fast track African and international capital towards infrastructure. Investments in energy and in transport can offer better commercial and social returns than most investments. However, creating the right structure to make these projects commercially attractive requires skill as well as political will and a conducive regulatory environment – which Hogan Lovells has the knowledge and experience to help clients navigate.
Africa may be the world’s fastest growing continent, but access to basic infrastructure services remains a critical challenge across the continent, with studies showing that poor road, rail and port facilities add 30% to 40% to the cost of goods traded among African countries. An oft-quoted World Bank report suggest that Africa needs to spend $93bn annually until 2020 to bridge its infrastructure gap.
Andrew Skipper, Partner and Head of Hogan Lovells’ Africa Practice, and speaker at AFC Live comments: “We are thrilled to be the lead legal sponsor for this event because we believe in and want to support business on the continent. Infrastructure plays an incredibly important part in any country’s growth story and in Africa, it is vital”. On the challenge of project funding, Andrew continues: “African-focused DFIs, Export Credit Agencies or foreign grant funds cannot entirely fund the continent’s infrastructure needs. International investors and commercial lenders need to adjust their thinking on a range of issues in order to encourage an appropriate view on acceptable risk allocation and investor returns in these sometimes complex markets.”
By bringing financiers and investors together alongside project developers and fund managers, AFC Live aims to ensure that more capital, both African and international, can be deployed towards addressing the continent’s pressing infrastructure needs. Hogan Lovells are proud to be a longstanding partner to investors, sponsors, developers and governments on this journey.