A Roundtable Discussion with the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA)

On October 24th, 2018, the Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) hosted a roundtable discussion with the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) in Washington, DC. The discussion began with welcome remarks by Florie Liser, CCA’s President and CEO. She introduced the speakers: Rouzbeh Ashayeri, Senior Underwriter and Head of North America Business Origination, and Jorge Rivas, Senior Underwriter for Infrastructure. The speakers then gave a presentation, summarizing the operations of MIGA. Through its mission and World Bank membership, MIGA protects investors working in developing countries through political risk insurance guarantees. To reduce the reluctance of companies to invest in emerging markets due to political and macroeconomic risks, MIGA covers non-commercial risks including: war and civil disturbance, expropriation, transfer restriction and currency incontrovertibility, breach of contract, and non-honoring of financial obligations. 

Ashayeri highlighted the world’s largest solar park in Egypt as an example of MIGA’s political risk insurance. MIGA supports Egypt’s ambitious effort to deliver reliable power while addressing climate change. The project consists of solar power plants of 250 MW. Another example of MIGA’s political risk insurance is its support for Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, a post-conflict state. The project involves the design, construction, and operation of a toll bridge in Abidjan. A third example of MIGA’s political risk insurance is the construction of West Africa’s largest wind farm in Senegal to improve the country’s energy security and diversify its energy mix. The project involves the construction, operation, and maintenance of 158.7 MW of the wind power farm. Ashayeri gave a final example by highlighting MIGA’s construction of a 1,038-bed hospital in Turkey, led by the Ministry of Health to renovate the country’s public hospital. 

To describe MIGA’s credit enhancement, Rivas gave examples of two projects in South Africa: 1) Loan proceeds on-lent to the South African agricultural sector for asset liability improvement purposes 2) Supporting transmission and information technology projects related to the expansion and upgrading of South Africa’s electricity infrastructure. 

Ashayeri and Rivas ended the discussion by pointing out that MIGA has supported 845+  projects in 110 countries.