State investment agency, the Botswana Development Corporation (BDC), recently raised P162 million in the capital market earmarked for projects in emerging industries, manufacturing, energy, infrastructure and services.
The fundraising is part of an investment pipeline of approximately P800 million that the BDC intends to make in the short term on projects that will accelerate the country’s economic recovery process whilst ensuring that the economy is better prepared to withstand similar shocks in future.
CEO, Cross Kgosidiile noted that the coronavirus (COVID-19) had rendered investors in the market more cautious about placing funds with institutions, including the BDC.
“COVID-19 has generally slammed the brakes on most economic driving activities as its negative impact became clear globally,” he said.
“The corporation continues to engage with potential investors in order to secure funding in support of our mandate.” He said the BDC aims to optimise its funding structure by introducing more longer-term debt to be acquired both locally and internationally during the short to medium term. Kgosidiile noted that the BDC’s bond issuance programme is open to local and offshore investors and is listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange.
“The bond programme is active for 12 months from the listing date. The corporation will keep assessing the situation on the ground to determine if there is a need to raise additional funding through the programme,” he said.
He added the BDC remained committed to tackling key learnings such as the lack of a large industrial manufacturing sector to support the large scale procurement in the economy and curb over-reliance on imports in key sectors of the economy such as agriculture, manufacturing and health.
“BDC is committed to actively and responsibly investing in projects that advance the diversity of the economy while driving the industrialisation of the country by providing financial assistance to investors with commercially viable projects, in line with the national agenda,” he said.
“Despite operating in today’s economy that presents its own set of challenges, the corporation is also committed to fully participating and leading in the economic recovery process, for the greater benefit of the Botswana economy.”