AfDB approves US$15 million facility for NMB Bank Zimbabwe

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By Alois Vinga

THE African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a US$15 million facility for NMB Bank Zimbabwe which will enable the local financier to support SMEs and local businesses.

The latest Development on the Trade Finance Transaction Guarantee facility was announced on Thursday.

This is AfDB’s first project with NMB, a registered commercial bank with strong SME credentials which will provide a 100% guarantee to international confirming banks (CBs) for the non-payment risk they take on NMB’s trade finance transactions conducted on behalf of SMEs and local corporates active in agri-business and trade distribution value chains in Zimbabwe.

The continental bank believes that the trade facility will support more than US$ 100 million in total trade volumes by 2026 and by extension reduce the continent’s trade finance gap it will also increase access to finance and support intra-Africa trade between Zimbabwe, SADC, and the rest of Africa.

AfDB’s head of Trade and Finance, Lamin Drammeh hailed the development and expressed hope it will bolster the targeted groups’ trade flows.

“This trade intervention speaks to the AfDB’s trade finance program objectives to support SMEs, women-owned businesses, farmers, and local enterprises/local corporates on the continent by connecting them into key value chains regionally and globally,” he said.

During the third quarter period, NMB  generated operating income of ZWL 397 billion for the nine months ended 30 September 2023, signifying a 245% increase from the ZWL 115 billion recorded for the same period in the prior year largely driven by non-interest income earned from the Bank’s digital channels. Property revaluations and exchange rate gains also contributed significantly.

Total assets amounted to ZWL 1,1 trillion as of 30 September 2023 signifying a 151% increase from 31 December 2022, mainly driven by an increase in customer deposits.

The Bank’s customer deposits increased by 99% from ZWL 174 billion as of 31 December 2022 to ZWL 346.3 billion as of 30 September 2023.