Nairobi Hosts IDA21 Summit of African Leaders

Published: April 29, 2024

Nairobi, Kenya (HM) – Over 20 African heads of state have gathered in Nairobi for the IDA21 Conference of African Presidents and the World Bank, which kicked off on Sunday, April 28th.

The summit aims to discuss the strategic role of the International Development Association (IDA) in driving economic transformation across Africa.

Among the leaders in attendance is the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, Hassan Sheikh, who arrived in Nairobi with the goal of accelerating cooperation between Somalia and international financial institutions like the IDA through special meetings.

The event began with a preliminary meeting of finance ministers from IDA member countries on Sunday. They discussed the IDA’s policy framework, funding priorities, and areas of focus for facilitating African development.

As the summit commenced, the anti-poverty organization ONE called on African leaders to demand an ambitious replenishment of the IDA fund – the world’s largest source of affordable financing for developing nations. In a joint memorandum with 14 other civil society groups, ONE urged leaders to:

  • Explicitly call for an IDA21 replenishment of at least $100 billion to put IDA on track to triple its financing to $279 billion by 2030.
  • Outline clear policy priorities and reforms for IDA’s agenda.
  • Commit to increasing citizen participation and transparency in IDA fund deployment.
  • Insist IDA become a more effective driver of economic transformation and regional integration through the AfCFTA.
  • Make a strong case to donors like the World Bank to increase IDA commitments.
  • Prioritize food security, agriculture, and nutrition in the IDA21 replenishment.

“IDA is crucial now given the fiscal constraints many countries are experiencing after back-to-back economic shocks,” said Serah Makka, ONE’s Africa Executive Director. “Africa can shape whether IDA is well used within their countries. This summit needs to send a clear and compelling demand signal.”

With youth employment, energy access, and human capital development as key focus areas, the IDA21 summit presents an opportunity for African leaders to guide the future of development financing on the continent. All eyes are on Nairobi as deliberations continue through April 29th.