Southern Times Writer
Abidjan - The International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC) has secured a major agreement with the African Development Bank that will see the international funding organisation include the use of seven FIDIC standard contracts for the next five years.
Under the terms of the agreement, FIDIC has granted the bank a non-exclusive licence to refer to the seven major FIDIC contracts for projects they finance and the documents may be used as part of the bank’s standard bidding documents. The contracts include the latest 2017 Second Edition FIDIC contracts and 1999 editions, which cover a wide range of international construction and infrastructure work.
The move by the AfDB is another significant endorsement for FIDIC contracts from a multilateral development bank, following similar agreements signed with the World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, Caribbean Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank in recent months.
FIDIC chief executive Dr Nelson Ogunshakin said: “We are delighted to have signed this agreement with the African Development Bank, an organisation doing fantastic work fighting poverty and improving living conditions for people in Africa. The signing of this agreement means that FIDIC has now entered into similar licencing agreements with almost all of the major global funding organisations. By adopting the FIDIC contracts on major projects, the AfDB is demonstrating that they endorse the fair and balanced approach that these documents offer to parties on major construction contracts and we believe that this will create more certainty in the market as banks, lenders, investors and clients adopt them.
“The bank’s endorsement should also provide additional comfort to the financial, institutional and private equity investors operating in the global market to adopt the use of FIDIC standard procurement contracts as an effective tool to mitigate the risks associated with investable infrastructure asset class.”
Commenting on the agreement, Frank Mvula the bank’s director of fiduciary services and inspection, said: “We are glad to have concluded an agreement with FIDIC that would enable us to incorporate FIDIC contracts in some of our standard bidding documents. There is no doubt that the use of FIDIC contracts is a step towards enhancing equity and fairness as well as efficient and effective contract management as emphasised under the bank’s new procurement framework.”
FIDIC president Bill Howard said: “I’m delighted that FIDIC has concluded this agreement with the African Development Bank. It’s a key aim of ours to strengthen FIDIC’s relationships with the multilateral development banks and other international funding institutions as improved communication and cooperation will bring benefits to the whole industry. Agreements like these can only be good for FIDIC, the global infrastructure sector and the banks and I look forward to a mutually beneficial relationship with the Bank over the coming years.”
FIDIC is the global representative body for national associations of consulting engineers and represents over one million engineering professionals and 40,000 firms in more than 100 countries worldwide. The buildings and infrastructure sector in which FIDIC members work contributes around US$36 trillion to global GDP.
Founded in 1964, the AfDB is a multilateral development finance institution. The AfDB comprises three entities - the African Development Bank, the African Development Fund and the Nigeria Trust Fund. The AfDB's mission is to fight poverty and improve living conditions on the continent through promoting the investment of public and private capital in projects and programmes that are likely to contribute to the economic and social development of the region. In November 2019, the bank's capital was reported as $208bn.