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[Vidéo News] PIAFRICA 2024 a success!

The highly anticipated 7th edition of the Pension Fund and Alternative Investment Africa (#PIAfrica) Conference carried a robust turnout of over 180+ attendees, 40 distinguished speakers, and representation from 25 countries, including delegations from Angola, Australia, Cameroun, Djibouti, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Namibia, and Nigeria.

PRE-EVENT: The 27th February was powered by a half day exclusive Pre-Event Workshop by BlackRock, Silver Sponsor to PIAFRICA2024. Delegates learnt about capturing Mega Forces, fixed Income strategies, the opportunities available in investing in Infrastructure and how technology can provide scale, efficiency and enhance investment oversights.

Key hosts from BlackRock were: Ron Mincy, Senior Investor and Head of Africa for the Climate Finance Partnership, Jason Suares, Director and Member of Aladdin Business Development, Marilyn Watson, Managing Director, Head of the Global Fundamental Fixed Income Strategy Team, and Chief Investment Strategist for Fundamental Fixed Income and Iyran Clunis, EMEA Head of Business Development, Aladdin Alternatives.

OVERALL 2 DAYS: The 2 days conference (28-29 February 2024) were marked by unparalleled networking opportunities and insightful discussions on pension fund management and alternative investments in Africa. The promises of unmatched networking opportunities and insightful discussions on pension fund management and alternative investments shaping Africa’s financial landscape, were also fulfilled.

Some of the Distinguished Speakers and Esteemed Guests at this edition have been:

● The Honourable Soomilduth (Sunil) Bholah, Minister of Financial Services and Good Governance, Mauritius
● Harvesh Seegolam, Governor, Bank of Mauritius
● The representative of H.E. Dr. Sidi Ould TAH, President, Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA), Mr. Moncef Klouche – Advisor to the President
● The Hon. Nicholas Sherry, Chair of TWUSUPER (Australia)
● Namakau Mundia Ntini, Chief Executive Officer, Pensions and Insurance Authority, Zambia
● Amos Ndung’u, General Manager – Investments of Kenya Power Pension Fund (KPPF)
● Mary Kamari, Group Executive Corporate Affairs and Investor Relations, TDB Group
● Rekha C Mhango, Deputy Governor – Administration, Bank of Zambia
● Dave Uduanu, CEO of Access Pension Fund Limited (Nigeria)
● Fola Fagbule, Deputy Director & Head, Financial Advisory, Africa Finance Corporation (AFC)
● Ken Poonoosamy, CEO of the Economic Development Board, Mauritius
● Bilal Adam, CEO of Stewards Investment Capital ● Representatives from, Eskom Pension & Provident Fund, Pencom Nigeria, National Social Security Authority (NSSA) Zimbabwe, Moçambique Previdente, National Fund for Municipal Workers (NFMW), National Pension Scheme Authority Zambia and more.


Opening Remarks

Mahad Ahmed

Mahad Ahmed, Managing Director of AME Trade Ltd sets the stage at the conference, highlighting Africa’s resilience amidst global challenges. With a projected 4% economic growth, the event focuses on education, networking, and the pivotal role of pension funds in Africa’s development. Under the theme ‘Re-Shaping African Markets,’ discussions delve into demographic shifts, digital disruption, and more, navigating challenges and opportunities for economic growth.

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Sunil Bholah

Soomilduth (Sunil) Bholah, Minister of Financial Services and Good Governance, Mauritius shared that Fund managers have adjusted their portfolios by increasing investments in illiquid credit, real estate, private equity, pension funds, venture capital, and special situations. Major investors like public pensions and endowments are emphasizing environmental and social responsibility commitments. There is a consensus on the importance of sustainable and impact investments, although opinions vary on the best approach due to external risks like climate change. Countries worldwide face challenges from aging populations and financial deficits in pension funds. Mauritius is addressing similar issues in its retirement system with widening deficits due to longevity risks and low returns from traditional asset classes. The low-interest-rate environment since 2009 has impacted investment fund performances. Mauritius is developing an Environmental Social and Governance Framework tailored for Africa to attract impactful investments aligned with sustainable development goals. The country’s focus on technology, innovative financial products, and regulatory enhancements positions it as a key player in FinTech and fund management. With Africa’s growing population and investment potential, Mauritius aims to leverage its financial services sector to drive inclusive economic growth. The country’s efforts align with global sustainability goals and aim to support Africa’s economic development through strategic partnerships and innovative financial solutions.

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Harvesh Seegolam

Harvesh Seegolam, Governor, Bank of Mauritius, delivered a keynote speech highlighting the importance of pension funds and alternative investments in the financial ecosystem, emphasizing the role they play in addressing Africa’s infrastructure deficit and financing needs. The Governor also discussed the Mauritian financial system, which has a bank-dominated structure but is increasingly focusing on alternative finance and innovative finance mechanisms. He shared that Mauritius has the potential to serve as a hub for pension funds and alternative investment vehicles, given its robust regulatory framework and compliance with international standards. The Governor also mentioned the IMF’s recent press release, which praised Mauritius’ strong economic rebound and growth, and the Bank of Mauritius’ initiatives to modernize the payments system and introduce a Central Bank Digital Currency.

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Ken Poonoosamy

Ken Poonoosamy, Chief Executive Officer, Economic Development Board, Mauritius, In 2023, amidst economic challenges, global markets showed significant growth. Equities rose by over 20%, Bitcoin surged by nearly 160%, and emerging market bonds saw triple-digit gains. The alternative investment industry is thriving, with a projected 9.3% growth in Assets Under Management, surpassing traditional investments. Mauritius, a key fund hub, manages over a thousand funds worth USD 130 billion, attracting global asset managers eyeing African opportunities. Sustainability drives African pension funds towards green projects and infrastructure development. Mauritius acts as a financial bridge for cross-border investments, offering investor-friendly structures and attracting diverse financiers for efficient fund management and investment opportunities in various sectors.

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Mary Kamari

Mary Kamari, Group Executive Corporate Affairs & Investor Relations from TDB, highlights TDB’s pivotal role in regional economic development, emphasizing its recent charter revision to allow pension funds and institutional investors to join. TDB attracts funding from various sources to invest in trade, infrastructure, and development projects, aiming to contribute to economic growth and job creation. The bank remains committed to sustainable development goals and climate change mitigation.

Fola Fagbule

Fola Fagbule, Deputy Director & Head, Financial Advisory, Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), expresses optimism about economic opportunities in Africa and AFC’s role in facilitating capital flow into the continent. Notably, AFC established the Infrastructure Climate Resilience Fund to address challenges like climate change and infrastructure development. AFC remains dedicated to finding solutions for Africa’s benefit.

Closing Remarks

Mahad Ahmed, Managing Director of AME Trade, has officially announced that Mauritius has been selected once more as the host country for the 8th edition of PIAFRICA, scheduled to be held on the 8th and 9th of April 2025.

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