The 2024 Afreximbank Research Sabbatical Program for African Researchers

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has long been at the front of promoting intra-African trade and economic development. It has deployed innovative structures to support Africa’s trade transformation, accelerate industrialization, and enhance intra-regional trade, contributing to sustained economic expansion on the continent.

Therefore, as part of its commitment to intellectual leadership, Afreximbank introduces the Research Sabbatical Program for African researchers. This unique initiative allows individuals from academic and research institutions to contribute to the bank’s mission while advancing their scholarly pursuits.

Afreximbank Research Sabbatical Program Details

Application DeadlineJune 30, 2024
Country to studyEgypt
SponsorAFREXIM Bank

Requirements for Afreximbank Research Sabbatical Program

Position: If you’re a senior researcher and senior lecturer from recognized research institutions, universities, or similar organizations, then this program is primarily open for you. Note: Entry into the program is highly competitive and based on merit.

Thematic Areas: Afreximbank seeks professionals interested in conducting research in the following areas:

  • Financial Sustainability,
  • Trade Finance Leadership,
  • Intra-African Trade and AfCFTA Implementation,
  • Africa’s Industrialization and Export Development, and
  • Any other areas relevant to the bank’s mandate.

Nationality: You must be an African national or from Caribbean Community countries to be eligible for the program.

Language Skills: You need to have excellent oral and written communication skills in English. But if you are also good in the bank’s other official languages (French, Arabic, or Portuguese), that will be an added advantage.

Commitment Period: Participants must be ready to commit to the bank for a non-renewable period of one (1) calendar year.

Selection Process and Thematic Research Areas for Afreximbank

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) is actively seeking research contributions in the following key themes:

  1. Intra-African Trade & AfCFTA Implementation:
  • Provide useful insights for efficiently implementing the Bank’s Intra-African Trade Initiative by reviewing recent literature on the constraints and opportunities for enhancing intra-African trade.
  • Study the state of Regional Value Chains (RVCs) in Africa, focusing on policies and infrastructure to enhance their expansion within the AFCFTA era.
  • Conduct a comprehensive study on the composition of intra-African trade, analyzing disaggregated Standard International Trade Classification (SITC) data for all African country pairs. This research will guide market identification efforts under the Bank’s Trade Information Services and explore opportunities from Bilateral Trade Agreements.
  • Research on the stock of infrastructure supporting intra-African trade, identifying gaps for more efficient trade operations.
  • Estimate growth opportunities related to diaspora engagement in the digital era.
  • Assess the level of informal intra-African trade occurring on the continent.
  • Explore Export Trading Companies (ETCs) in Africa, their role in promoting exports globally, legal arrangements, and potential candidates.
  • Analyze the size of the African diaspora market within the context of the bank’s current Strategic Plan, ‘IMPACT 2021-Africa Transformed.’
  • Undertake a comprehensive study on Exchange Rate Mechanisms (ERMs), drawing insights from the Eurozone experience. This will support AfCFTA implementation and the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS) and facilitate the transition toward a single African currency.
  • Investigate Tariff Revenue Losses that State Parties to the AfCFTA may face and their implications for the AfCFTA Adjustment Fund.
  1. Industrialization and Export Development

These specific studies within this theme may be considered, but are not limited to:

  • Constraints to Export Manufacturing: Understand the constraints faced by firms, sectors, and the macroeconomy in export manufacturing. Provide recommendations for overcoming these challenges.
  • Leveraging African Green Minerals: Explore how African green minerals can contribute to economic development, especially in the context of climate change.
  • Light Manufacturing and Agro Processing in Africa: Assess capacities, challenges, and opportunities in light manufacturing and Agro-processing industries across Africa.
  • Africa’s Entertainment Industry: Investigate the state of Africa’s entertainment industry, highlighting its capacities, challenges, and growth prospects.
  • Cross-Country Value Chains in Agro Processing: Study the development of cross-country value chains within the Agro-processing sector.
  • Critical Success Factors for Export Manufacturing: Considering infrastructure limitations, identify key success factors for promoting export manufacturing.
  • Impact of Standards and Packaging on Export Performance: Analyze how standards and packaging affect the performance of manufactured exports in Africa.
  • Explore strategies for promoting export manufacturing within the framework of industrial parks and special economic zones.
  1. Trade Finance Leadership

These specific studies within this theme may be considered, but are not limited to:

  • Trade Financing Gap for Africa: Conduct a detailed study on the trade financing gap in Africa, analyzing it by product types. Additionally, explore a special section focusing on intra-African trade financing gaps.
  • Impact of Regulations on Economic Development and Trade Finance Access: Investigate how regulations impact economic development and access to trade finance for African entities. Consider this as a basis for implementing special concessions in regulating activities related to African trade finance.
  • Comprehensive Sector Studies on Trade Commodities of Interest to Africa: Undertake comprehensive studies on commodities relevant to African trade. Explore their significance, challenges, and opportunities.
  1. Financial Sustainability

The program may consider, but is not limited to, the following specific studies:

  • Estimating the probability of default on trade finance loans in Africa.
  • Determining the bank’s optimal product mix and resource allocation under normal and risk-constrained conditions.

Application Documents

If you are interested in this program, then you should go to the bank’s website to complete an online application form and submit the following documents online:

  1. Current CV and Cover Letter
  2. Defined Plan of Research Activities:
  • Showing research outcomes, deliverables, and timelines.
  • Ensure that supporting materials demonstrating the likelihood of achieving those outcomes are included.
  1. Recommendation Letter from Present Employer:
  • Confirming that the candidate’s job will still be available at the end of the sabbatical.
  1. Copy of Valid Passport
  2. Certified Copies of Relevant Academic Certificates
  3. Short Statement of Intent (maximum one A4 page):
  • Explain why they should be considered for the program.

How to Apply

Interested and qualified? If so, complete the following steps to apply for a position:

  1. Complete the online application form on the bank’s website.
  2. Submit all the application documents listed above (Certified copies of relevant academic certificates only)
  3. If you haven’t received a response within 2 weeks, consider your application unsuccessful. However, your CV will remain in our database for other suitable positions.

For more details, visit the Afreximbank website.

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