**The African financial world has grown considerably in recent years but not without facing some major challenges. In Lomé, Togo, the Africa Financial Industry Summit (AFIS), organised by the pan-African magazine Jeune Afrique, has become a key event for African finance, bringing together more than 800 leaders.
Despite mounting obstacles, the continent's financial institutions are beginning to emerge on the world stage. As international competitors withdraw, an opportunity is opening up to extend the influence of the African financial sector.
However, managing growing public debt, adapting to climate challenges and finding new sources of finance are major imperatives for the industry.
Serge Ékué, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the West African Development Bank, stresses the crucial importance of effective regulation for the rapid and sustainable growth of the sector.
Among the discussions at the summit, the issue of international loans stood out, with the cost of borrowing on world markets up to 2.1% higher in sub-Saharan Africa, creating a significant burden for local governments.
Uzziel Ndagijimana, Rwandan Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, raised the need for rating agencies to take greater account of structural factors in order to improve the situation.
Another key theme of this event is the tokenisation of assets, an innovation that involves converting goods into digital tokens for trading on the internet. This approach could free up an enormous volume of liquidity by making very high-value assets accessible.
Finally, the topic of cyber-insurance is of increasing importance. Cyber-attacks represent a major challenge for African banks, with an average of 2,164 attacks per week, according to Alain Kaninda, Director General of the Regulatory Authority.
In just three years, AFIS has established itself as a key event, bringing together the leaders of African finance to discuss the challenges and opportunities of a booming sector.