In line with the goal of the Financial Centre for Sustainability, Lagos (“FC4SL” or “FC4S, Lagos”) to position itself as a champion and leading regional financial centre for sustainability in Africa, FC4SL commenced efforts to establish a relationship with the Casablanca City Finance Authority (“CFCA”), Morocco, one of the founding members of the FC4S Global Network.
Consequently, a Memorandum of Understanding (“MoU”) was executed by both parties at a virtual Signing Ceremony which took place during the FC4S Global Network Annual General Meeting hosted by Finance for Tomorrow, the Paris FC4S chapter, with about thirty-two (32) member countries in attendance.
This collaboration between FC4SL and CFCA, Morocco, sets to birth a mutually beneficial relationship that would ensure common practices are exchanged amongst both parties. The MoU signing symbolises the agreement by both parties to work together to drive innovative ideas that would assist in entrenching the concept of green and sustainable finance as well as aiding the delivery of the UN’s 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).
Speaking to stakeholders present at the virtual Signing Ceremony, the Vice-Chairman, FC4SL, and Chairman, Federal Government of Nigeria Economic Advisory Council, Dr. Doyin Salami, stated that
“this partnership will likely foster intra-Africa trade and investment whilst helping to ensure that the whole ecosystem within the sustainable finance market is fully harnessed. Indeed, initiatives driven by both parties would be essential in tackling climate-related challenges as well as yielding tangible economic and social benefits for Nigeria, Morocco and beyond”.
The Deputy General Manager, CFCA, Morocco, Ms. Lamia Merzouki, who is also a newly elected Co-Chair of the FC4S Global Network, while addressing attendees present, reiterated that “CFCA is very glad to sign this MoU with FC4S Lagos”. She added, “With a solid green DNA and a committed team, I am confident that we can, hand in hand, positively impact the continent’s effort in meeting its SDGs, and help transition towards more sustainable economies.”
With a mission to implement and manage Casablanca Finance City’s development strategy, promote CFC to international institutions and investors, develop an attractive “CFC value proposition” for international institutions and investors, drive new reforms to improve the business environment, advise and support companies with the CFC status, Casablanca Finance City Authority is a limited company born from a public-private partnership aiming to position Casablanca as a regional financial hub in Africa.
CFCA was established in July 2010 through a high-level roundtable meeting, including the Region of Casablanca-Settat, the Central Bank of Morocco, Caisse de Dépôt et de Gestion, the main Moroccan banks, the central securities depository, the insurance industry and the Casablanca Stock Exchange.
The Financial Centre for Sustainability, Lagos was established in April 2019 by key financial market stakeholders including FMDQ Group, Africa’s first vertically integrated financial market infrastructure group with the support of the United Nations Environment Programme (“UNEP”) Inquiry, and other stakeholders in the financial market ecosystem.
Its sole aim is accelerating the expansion of green and sustainable finance in Nigeria as well as promoting the adoption of the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.
In May 2019, the FC4S Lagos was admitted as the 23rd member of the International Network of Financial Centres (“FC4S Network”) headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and was formally launched in October 2019 by Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Executive Governor of Lagos State.
Since its launch, FC4SL has been working with local/international stakeholders on various initiatives including the UNEP-supported Green Tagging Project which aims to examine the extent to which Nigerian banks are lending to projects that enhance climate change mitigation and adaptation.