22 July 2022, Zambia, Lusaka – The African Peer Review Mechanism Continental Secretariat (APRM) delegation led by the APRM Chief Executive Officer, Prof. Eddy Maloka, took part at the Fifth Ordinary Session of the African Union Specialized Technical Committee (STC) on Finance, Monetary Affairs, Economic Planning and Integration (STC) held from the 17th to the 22nd July 20220 in Lusaka, Republic of Zambia. The STC took place under the theme ‘Improving Africa’s access to Capital: Debt Management and the Rising Influence of Credit Rating Agencies’.
The main objective of the STC on Finance, Economic Planning, Monetary Affairs and Integration was to deliberate on, among other things, issues relating to increased access to capital, rising debt, and increasing influence of credit rating agencies in Africa. The meeting provided platform for policymakers to articulate concrete proposals for debt resolution in Africa and the nexus between governance and economic growth also to frame concrete policy options and actions for reducing the growing influence of credit rating agencies in Africa though an African-led solution.
In line with the APRM mandate of providing support to Member States in the field of international credit rating agencies and as instructed by the STC in its previous sessions, the APRM presented the findings of a study on the financial, structural, and legal implications of establishing an African Credit Rating Agency (ACRA) to the 5th STC on Finance, Monetary Affairs, Economic Planning and Integration. The findings of the study indicated that the legal architecture at both national and continental level allows for establishment of an ACRA without contracting existing legal frameworks governing international financial services institutions. It is therefore feasible to establish the ACRA as an autonomous specialized entity of the African Union, self-funded through its shareholders capital, contributions from Pan-African Financial Institutions. ACRA will be self-sustainable through revenue generated from its services to eliminate the burden of additional Member States’ statutory contributions to the AU.
The STC requested the APRM to deepen the work on the legal, structural and financial implications of the proposed African Rating Agency taking into account the Moratorium of creating new Structures within the AU system and submit the revised study to the next session of the STC.
Pursuant to its mandate of promoting good governance on the continent, the APRM submitted to the STC the African Principles and Guidelines on Corporate Governance. The African Principles and Guidelines on Corporate Governance were endorsed by STC for consideration and adoption by the 36th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government scheduled to take place in February 2023. The endorsement came following the recommendation of the 4th Experts’ Meeting that directed for timely consultations with Member States so that they provide substantive input to the document. The APRM undertook various consultative processes and obtained inputs from Zambia, Ghana, Senegal, Egypt, South Africa, and Morocco, and the submissions were incorporated into the document submitted to the STC.
Furthermore, the APRM was requested to undertake sensitization programs across various business platforms, AU Organs, and Specialized Agencies to assist the Member States in the implementation of the African Principles and Guidelines on Corporate Governance.