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AfDB Safeguards. Towards an Integrated Safeguards System. Quality Assurance and Results Department Compliance and Safeguards Division ORQR.3. AFDB Current Safeguards System. Current policies and procedures. Current Safeguards System. Policy level:

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afdb safeguards
AfDB Safeguards

Towards an Integrated Safeguards System

Quality Assurance and Results Department

Compliance and Safeguards Division


afdb current safeguards system
AFDB Current Safeguards System

Current policies and procedures


Current Safeguards System

  • Policy level:
    • Main crosscutting policies (environment, poverty, population, gender, NGO/CSO,)
    • A total of 13 crosscutting policies to be complied with
  • Bank procedures
    • Public Sector: Environmental & Social Assessment Procedures
    • Private Sector: Environmental Review Procedure
  • Bank guidelines & other tools
    • Integrated Environmental and Social Impact Assessment
    • Auditing guidelines
    • Participation/CSO handbook
    • Gender screening tools, climate change screening tool, etc.

Current System Lacunae

  • Policies:
    • 13 policies and some grey areas (e.g. disclosure/ resettlement/emergency recovery )
    • Do not cover the range of cases (supplementary loans, programs, etc.)
    • Do not include new themes (climate, coal, etc.)
  • Procedures & Guidelines:
    • Too vague (e.g.: private sector operations; corporate loans and FIs)
    • Do not capture new international best practices and AfDB lessons learned
    • Refer to outdated Bank structure.


  • Diversification of portfolio and interventions
  • Increased demand for energy and transport expected
  • More IRM cases, implying increased attention for environmental and social considerations in operations
  • New institutional structure

Integrated Approach

  • Integration between social sustainability aspects, climate change and ecological considerations
  • Single set of procedures for both public and private sectors reducing transaction costs
  • Operational safeguards deriving from cross-cutting policies and including emerging issues
  • Assemble new OS, revised ESAP and IESA in one system

ISS Structure

  • Policy level
    • Operational safeguards as concise statements deriving from bank policies
  • Reference to new Bank structure in procedures
  • Operational level
    • Updated environmental and social procedures
    • Update of Guidelines ( IESIA, Auditing )
    • New guidelines as needed (e.g.: supervision)
    • Review of joint funding procedures

Other Tools

  • Integrated Categorization and Safeguards Sheet (for project categorization, safeguard triggers and project screening for climate change)
  • Accrued Task manager/lead responsibility for compliance with E&S
  • Revisiting of templates and processes to streamline E&S safeguards
  • Sharp and effectively implemented

supervision tools (due diligence review)

  • Adequate training and capacity building

Process for ISS Design

  • Concept note to OpsCom
  • Scoping document shared bank-wide
  • Organizational structure
    • Steering Committee with ORQR as secretariat
    • Technical advisory committee / Bank experts
    • International consultants and other experts
  • Consultation plan / communication
  • Engineering and automation (SAP-CIMM)
Important tool to proactively promote sustainable development, moving beyond initial focus on avoiding potential harm

Elevates assessment of impacts and risks in the overall economic and social development planning and decision making process – in terms of both priority and timing

Establishes a mechanism for public accountability related to environmental and social impacts of policy and investment decisions

Mandates consideration of alternatives for major decisions and evaluation of the consequences of taking no action

SESA in the New System

It is a country-owned product

It is a driver for the mental switch from supervision to implementation support

It will be mandatory for certain type of operations


SESA Working Group

Assessing the use of SESA guidelines (SIA) in the past

Collecting information/ opinion from operation departments and Regional Member Countries

Appraising our pilots

Updating AfDB guidelines to include new dimensions:

More emphasis on social dimension

Climate change adaptation

User friendly checklist (e.g.: resettlement ….)

Next Steps