News, Webinar 2

Concept note: Perspective for the year 2021 – What will be the new normal and how can financial institutions continue to offer responsible financial services?


  • Topic 2: Perspective for the year 2021: what will be the new normal and how can financial institutions continue to offer responsible financial services?

21stJanuary 2021, 01 pm (Abidjan) / 02 pm (Cotonou, Paris, Frankfurt, Douala, Kinshasa)



Introduction and background

Making Finance Work For Africa (MFW4A) and the IPC, Horus and IECD Consortium, within the context of theEuropean Investment Bank (EIB) TA Financial sector programme for West and Central Africa are hosting a series of four (4) webinars for banks and microfinance institutions of these two (2) sub regions. Thisconcept note is related to the second webinar, whichwill covertopics around business recovery and operating in the “new normal”.

The appearance of Covid-19 has caused a shock to the global economy and the uncertainty around the pathway to recovery remains very high. After navigating through a volatile business environmentin 2020, financial institutions now have to deal with new paradigms as the year 2021 comes. According to Fitch Rating, the outlook 2021 for the African banking sector is stable as operational activities recover gradually,however it might take up to two years before banks return to their pre-pandemic performance levels. The shape of recovery is uncertain and slow against weak local currencies, asset deterioration and the shock caused on key economic sectors and actors, including MSMEs. According to McKinsey, African Banks‘return on equity could fall between 5% and 15% percentage points over the period 2019-2021.And yet, their role will be key to ensure lending continuity.

EIB’s mission clearly supports motions to:

• Ensure the provision of financial services in line with the regulatory requirements,and
• Help partner financial institutionsto continue business operations on a credit worthy basis, proactively managing present and future NPLs and ensuring the safety of customer deposits.

In this context, financial institutionsand other participants are invited to share their perspective on

• Between prudence and economic stimulus, how can financial institutions support MSMEs in 2021, given that the moratoriums and grace periods will come to an end, hence putting additional pressure on portfolio quality while on the other hand, FIs are expected to play a central role to support the MSMEs in the recovery phase?

• How are FIs adapting in terms of digitization, taking into account the need to reduce customer visits to branches as a precautionary Covid-19 measure, but also the necessity to have a whole digital strategy in collaboration or in competition with Fintechs?

• How has the pandemic affected FI needs (liquidity vs. risk-sharing mechanisms) and how can DFIs support banks and MFIs recover from the crisis and disruptions caused by the pandemic to ensure business continuity and continue offering responsible financial services in 2021?

Expected outcomes

The expected outcomes of this webinar session are as follows:

The audience will have learned what the main challenges are for a continued financial services provision to MSMEs.

Participants will have gained insight on how major players (one bank, one MFI) in the region are tackling the challenges caused by the pandemic and how they ensure their business continuity in 2021, both on the lending side and on their delivery channels.

Participants will have learned from a DFI representative what has been done on their end to support their FI clients in these times of change.

Participants will have had the opportunity to advance suggestions on how DFIs can further support.

Event format and audience

The webinar will last about 75 minutesand be held in French with simultaneous translation into English. It will combine presentations followed by a Q&A session provoking a panel discussion.

• Opening by moderator 1 – 5 min
• Introductory words by EIB – 5 min
• Introduction by moderator 2 on the topic – 7 min
• Presentation MFI – 10 min
• Transition by moderator and Q&A – 7 min
• Presentation bank – 10 min
• Transition by moderator and Q&A – 7 min
• Presentation EIB – 10 min
• Summary by moderator – 4 min
• Final Q&A – 10 min

The target audience is essentially middle and senior managers from financial institutionsand development finance institutions operating in West & Central Africa.


At the end of the webinar, key takeaways will be summarized in a post-event report and shared with participants and other stakeholders within the African financial ecosystem. A digital version will also be posted on MFW4A portal for public dissemination.

Tentative speakers

• Moderators:Hugues Kamewe, MFW4A(m) andJean-Claude Thetika, Managing Director, Fond pour l’InclusionFinancière (DRC) (m)

Introductory words: Ms Jane Feehan, Head of Office Representation Cote d’Ivoire (f)


Ms Abban Nana Araba, Head of Consumer Banking, Ecobank(f)

Ruben Dieudonné, Regional Director, West and Central Africa, Baobab Group and CEO of Baobab Côte d’Ivoire (m)

Olivier Edelman, Head of Microfinance Unit, EIB (m)

Other planned webinars

• 11th February 2021 : The importance of digitalization in times of crisis
• 4th March 2021 : Gender finance as opportunity in crisis times


MFW4A: Hugues Kamewe IPC GmbH: Edwige Takassi

Email:h.kamewe-tsafack@afdb.orgEmail :