The AFD Group and USAID formed a strategic partnership to accelerate investments into Congolese businesses, as a first step in attracting new private capital to the DRC. Their coordination is aimed at strengthening the country’s private sector. By leveraging USAID’s team of investment advisory professionals and Proparco’s private sector network, the partnership will mobilize capital within the agribusiness sector. This partnership will improve the readiness of Congolese businesses to receive financing and to undertake market studies.
The goal is to highlight the attractiveness of the DRC as an investment destination not only for international Development Finance Institutions (DFIs), but also for a full range of domestic and other international investors. The DRC is “open for business,” as demonstrated by the country’s 2020 eligibility for privileged trading rights under the U.S. African Growth and Opportunity Act, that provides Congolese companies with duty-free access to the U.S. market for over 1,800 products. In addition, the country is poised to join the East African Community.
Over the next five years, USAID through its “Invest” program, will work with investors and businesses to act as a neutral intermediary and facilitate investment deals in the agricultural and complementary sectors, such as energy and finance at no cost to those served. Proparco and USAID will continue to search for ways to strengthen the DRC’s financial system, in consultation with other institutions such as the DFI Fragility Forum. These investments are a critical contribution towards reinvigorating economic growth in the DRC and business acumen of Congolese businesses.