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LESSONS:

Afghanistan Investment Guarantee Facility Project

sector: Finance | country: Afghanistan

The availability of bankable political risk guarantee (PRG) cover for risks that are within the power of the government to mitigate is important to investors and their financiers. However, such targeted cover cannot address concerns about security and macroeconomic stability.

Close collaboration with Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), International Development Association (IDA), and Department for International Development (DFID) strengthened project design. It allowed for excellent exchange of experience with regard to PRGs, other insurance products, and how they can best be used to fill market gaps, especially in post-conflict countries.

Responsibility for the project was spread out within ADB, causing coordination issues with MIGA and other cofinanciers. For future projects combining sovereign, nonsovereign, and cofinancing operations, having a single focal point within ADB would improve project implementation and prospects for success.

The capacity of Afghanistan Investment Support Agency (AISA) to promote new investment in Afghanistan and the availability of PRG cover to support such investment was poor because of staff turnover and an inadequate incentive framework. This should have been anticipated and technical assistance could have looked at ways to address this problem.

Modifications to project design, the monitoring framework, and the assessment methodology would help future projects using this or a similar PRG modality and projects that combine sovereign, nonsovereign and cofinancing operations. The assessment criteria did not easily accommodate the unique structure of the project or the modality used.

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