Through the African Financial Markets Initiative (AFMI), the African Development Bank (AfDB) launched its AfDB/ AFMISM Bloomberg® African Bond Index (ABABI) in February 2015.

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The composite index, which is calculated with the Bloomberg indices, is currently comprised of the Bloomberg South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria and Kenya local currency sovereign indices with Botswana and Namibia expected to join by October 2015.

"As more African countries are increasingly looking to domestic capital markets to source much-needed financing for economic development, we are delighted to welcome Botswana and Namibia to the index and expect to include more countries to it as soon as reliable pricing information is made available,” said the director of the AfDB’s Financial Sector Development Department, Stefan Nalletamby.

The expanded index will now include the six most liquid sovereign bond markets in Africa and three sub-indices for various maturity ranges. A security that wishes to be included in the index must have at least one year remaining to maturity and withstand price stability tests.

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The AFMI works to strengthen the continent’s local currency bond markets and also aims to create an environment where African countries can access financing at variable terms.