Year 2020 has undoubtedly disrupted our world, both in human and economic terms. I should first like to call to mind with deep sorrow those women and men who fell victims of the Covid-19 pandemic. Even worse, while some families are mourning, others are suffering severe economic repercussions, with the world economy shrinking by 3.5% and growth in our sub-region declining by 5% (0.9% in 2020 compared to 5.8% in 2019).
More than ever, the stability of our societies has been challenged. In our sub-region, institutions have been at the heart of the mechanism put in place to mitigate the effects of the crisis and lend support to the populations. Thanks to the responsiveness of its Board of Directors, BOAD, alongside the States, BCEAO and the WAEMU commission, was able to intervene on an urgent basis: XOF200 billion were made available to our member governments and XOF100 billion to the private sector through refinancing facilities to national financial institutions. Moreso, as a result of its investment grade rating secured since 2015, the Bank has continued to mobilize resources on preferential terms from its technical and financial partners. Thus, during the year, it signed a grant agreement for about XOF40 billion and loan agreements for XOF260 billion with the Agence française de développement, the World Bank, the Austrian Development Bank and JP Morgan. These funds will be used to support efforts deployed by member countries and the private sector in their fight against Covid-19.
BOAD equally showed its resilience. In terms of funding, the Bank granted XOF664 billion to the Union’s member governments and private sector in 2020, representing a 33.3% increase compared to 2019 and an unprecedented amount since commencement of its operations. The Bank’s total net commitments amounted to XOF6,266 billion as at 31 december 2020. Annual disbursements amounted to nearly XOF506 billion, or an increase of 30% compared to 2019, for a total of XOF4,216 billion, representing a total disbursement rate of 67%. The annual disbursement rate stood at 25% as at end 2020 compared to 20% the previous year. In addition, the Bank’s financial structure remained balanced and operations resulted in a net profit of 9.3% higher, compared to the income for 2019.