Virtual Africa Round Table on Insolvency Reform 2020
Monday, November 23, 2020 from 12.00 – 2.30 pm GMT
Due to COVID-19, the Africa Round Table on Insolvency Reform (ART) was paused in 2020. However, after 10 years of consecutive ARTs, we wanted to keep the conversation going – especially at a time when so many countries are facing waves of insolvencies as a result of the measures adopted to curb the health crisis. With this in mind, we invited you to a shorter online virtual ART, which we hope will help policymakers from Africa with their COVID-related insolvency plans and enable our vibrant community to reunite at this difficult time.
The two and a half-hour interactive virtual ART focussed on insolvency reform in the context of COVID-19. The meeting began with a discussion of COVID-19’s effect on Africa’s economy and what could be coming. The event then explored what the major insolvency-related issues are for the continent and concluded with examples of what select countries have done and are doing from a policy perspective to respond to the pandemic.
You may find the following reports helpful as background to the discussions:
First Africa Round Table
30th September 2010
The first INSOL Africa Round Table on insolvency reform took place on September 30 in Abuja, Nigeria. This one-day event was jointly organised by INSOL International and the World Bank Group, with support from International Monetary Fund, bringing together insolvency experts from a number of African countries (Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia). In addition, the Senior Advisor on insolvency reform in the 17 West African OHADA countries was also present.
Institutions and organisations involved in the region welcomed and extended their support and cooperation to this important INSOL initiative. It was agreed that a coordinated regional approach would be an efficient and effective way of optimising the use of the knowledge, experience and resources available with the participating global institutions and bodies and others which can contribute to this initiative. The work of the Africa Round Table could lead to regional and country level projects which could be taken up jointly or individually by the supporting institutions.
It was noted that in many countries legislative changes are required to update the law and introduce restructuring mechanisms to help rescue financially viable businesses. Institutional reforms are another area in need of priority attention. Improvement in infrastructure, in particular that of the court systems is a vital area. Simultaneously, out of court restructuring regimes can be developed to reduce the burden on the courts and promote flexible responses. There is an urgent need to ensure that the quality of practitioners and the judiciary is in line with internationally accepted standards. Capacity building of judges and practitioners through training can help in improvement of their skills and capacity.
Africa Round Table Abuja 2010 report
INSOL World article 2010
Second Africa Round Table
Cape Town, South Africa
16th - 17th September 2011
In September 2011, the second INSOL Africa Round Table was held in Cape Town, South Africa. Some 50 delegates took part representing 16 African countries plus a delegation from the OHADA countries. Judges, practitioners, regulators and policy-makers attended.
"Preserving value in distressed businesses" was the central theme. As echoed by most of the attendees, this is a concern of massive importance in the African context, more so (said some of the participants) than in the mature markets. The theme was fleshed out and debated in various forms – out of court restructurings, formal workouts, and the roles of the judiciary, regulators and practitioners in developing a formula to achieve the elusive value preservation. Hugely different perspectives were reported and it was apparent that the divergences on the African continent were great. But by far the majority of the jurisdictions represented reported that capacity building for the Courts and regulation of practitioners was a uniform problem.
Cape Town Programme
INSOL World article 2010
Third Africa Round Table
7th - 8th September 2012
The Third Africa Round Table was held in Nairobi, Kenya with the theme "Insolvency Best Practices: A Roadmap for Reform in Africa". The objective of this conference was for policy makers, regulators and private practitioners to focus on specific current challenges that are hindering the development of insolvency regimes in Africa; and to develop a toolkit that will have maximum impact in strengthening these regimes. In effectively leveraging the full range of best practice standards, innovative technologies and flexible tools, it is hoped that viable assets will continue to retain their productive value in the economy, stakeholder returns will increase whilst entrepreneurship and job creation will be stimulated.
Internation Law Office Article/Report on 2012 ART
by Anthony Idigbe and Okorie Kalu of Punuka Attorneys, Nigeria
INSOL World Report
Fourth Africa Round Table
11th & 12th October 2013
Radisson Blu Hotel
The theme this year was "Building Africa’s Credit Environment for Growth: How insolvency regimes can improve the cost and availability of credit". Its focus was on the intersection of creditor rights and an improved restructuring and insolvency regime. It drew on commercial banks’ experiences to understand where they see potential for improvement that can help mitigate creditor risk and ultimately encourage cheaper and more extensive bank lending in the Africa region, lending that can be used to start new businesses and generate wealth in the economy.
Keynote Speech by Hon. Wynter M Kabimba, SC, MP, Minister of Justice
Nortel and Leham in the Supreme Court
Ex tempare Ruling re Titan Petrochemicals - The Supreme Court of Bermuda Ruling
Lusaka, Post Article
Workout Game - Dr Jan Adriaanse
Fifth Africa Round Table
17th - 18th October 2014
Venue: Kampala, Uganda
Although it has been over five years since the global financial crisis, many countries are continuing to experience poor economic growth and high levels of business distress. The 2014 Africa Round Table will explore how insolvency reform can contribute to economic development by saving valuable business and thereby preserving jobs, encouraging entrepreneurship through more efficient liquidation proceedings and promoting foreign investment through procedural coordination with other jurisdictions. The theme is "Jobs in Africa: how insolvency regimes impact economic growth".
Towards modified universalism the recognition and enforcement of cross border insolvency Judgments and orders in Malawi
*NEW* Prof. Jan Adriaanse Workshop
Sixth Africa Round Table
12th - 13th October 2015
Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel
Cape Town, South Africa
The 2015 Africa Roundtable was held in Cape Town, South Africa on Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th October 2015. The theme this year was “Restoring Financial Sector Stability: the role of insolvency regimes”.
Recent systemic crises have underlined how widespread, sever weaknesses in corporate finance and governance, combined with poor macroeconomic policies, can have serious consequences for the economic and social fabric of a country. This year's ART explored the role that insolvency regimes play in contributing to financial sector stability and the protection of creditor rights.
Africa Roundtable Open Forum - Tuesday 13th October 2015
For the first time, this year we opened up the second day to all those interested in and affected by insolvency reform in Africa. This was to enable a greater forum for all stakeholders to engage in discussion and to learn from international best practice.
The preceding day was a closed meeting for policy makers, regulators and the judiciary who also attended the Open Forum on 13th October at Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel, Cape Town, South Africa.
The theme for this year’s event was “Restoring Financial Sector Stability: the role of insolvency regimes”.
Keynote Address - Deputy Minister of Justice & Constitutional Development
Cape Town Full Program
Powerpoint Presentation - Goolam Ballim, Standard Bank
Insolvency and Judical Capacity: Challenges of the African Courts
OHADA Presentation on the new Insolvency Legislation
Insolvency and Judicial Capacity: Challenges of the African Courts
Seventh Africa Round Table
Freedom to fail? – Insolvency for micro, small and medium enterprises
6th-7th October 2016
Labadi Beach Hotel
Role of the Regulator
South Africa's Ministerial policy for the appointment of liquidators under the spotlight
Some thoughts on Stage regulation of South Africa's insolvency law
State regulation of South Africa's insolvency law - an admin law approach
The new Ohada uniform act organising collective proceedings for the wiping of debts - UACP
Eighth Africa Round Table
Plugging the implementation gap
9th - 10th November 2017
Sugar Beach Resort, Mauritius
10th Anniversary Africa Round Table on Insolvency Reform 2019
21st - 22nd November 2019
ART 2019 Additional Papers
Critiquing business restructuring plans - sample plan
Critiquing business restructuring plans - Concept of "administration" under the Mauritius Insolvency Act 2009
A practical workshop on Insolvency Practitioners skills - case study
Stakeholder negotiations in a cross-border insolvency - slides
The 2019 Africa Round Table (ART) on insolvency reform hosted by INSOL International and World Bank Group, was held on 21st - 22nd November 2019 at Swakopmund Hotel & Entertainment Centre. The theme for was “Celebrating a decade of insolvency reform in Africa and anticipating what lies ahead”.
Since the introduction of the Africa Round Table initiative in 2010, the focus has been on introducing delegates across the continent to the various insolvency and restructuring tools that are available in an insolvency scenario, with the emphasis on encouraging and supporting insolvency reform. The themes of the events have ranged from value preservation to insolvency frameworks for micro, small and medium enterprises to examining how to encourage more effective implementation of insolvency regimes. The focus, however, remains on developing professional ties with the goal of improving insolvency and restructuring regimes across the African continent.
Celebrating 10 years of ART provided us not only with an opportunity to look back at the past decade of insolvency reform in Africa, but also with an opportunity to pause and reflect as to the potential challenges that lie ahead, specifically in Sub-Saharan Africa.
For further information and details of sponsorship opportunities please contact Penny Robertson at [email protected]
INSOL International and The World Bank Group would like to thank the following supporters of the Africa Round Table Initiative: