China Development Bank Enters $100mn Deal to Finance African SMEs


One of China’s three big policy banks has entered an agreement with pan-African lender United Bank for Africa (UBA) to provide funding to small and medium-sized enterprises across Africa.

The seven-year loan agreement between China Development Bank, the world’s biggest development-oriented financial institution, and Nigeria-based UBA will provide $100 million in financing to SME’s across 19 African nations.

“We are excited to partner with China Development Bank (CDB), the Development Financial Institution of the Chinese Government, on this historic transaction, as we strongly believe that the facility will serve as a catalyst to the sustainable development of commerce and industry in Africa through provision of critical financial interventions to SMEs across our presence countries,” said Kennedy Uzoka, Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer at UBA.

According to Uzoka CDB’s credit line would aid the recovery of economic activity and spur entrepreneurship in Africa by providing inclusive financing.

UBA chairman Tony Elumelu said that the Nigerian lender hoped to engage in long-term cooperation with the Chinese policy bank in the African continent.

“In UBA, CDB would have an enduring partner in reaching out to Africans as UBA provides banking services to over 14 million people across 20 African countries, and like CDB, UBA funds critical infrastructural projects on the continent.”

CDB president Zheng Zhijie said that the agreement would help to improve business interactions between China and Africa, as well as enable it to expand its regional financial operations.

“UBA is a leading and dependable bank not only in Nigeria but Africa, and this partnership will help our Bank to accelerate its business objectives in Africa, more importantly as we deepen our investment in energy, road and rail constructions, infrastructure in Africa,.”