The African Development Bank Group, including the Bank itself (AfDB) and its “soft-loan” affiliate, the African Development Fund (AfDF), is a development finance institution based in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. The Bank has 53 African members, as well as 24 non-regional members, including the United States. In the mid-1990s, the Bank faced management problems and difficulties arising from non-performing loans, but reforms launched in 1995 by a new Bank president, Omar Kabbaj, brought new pledges of support from the non-regionals. U.S. contributions to the Fund resumed in FY1998 and to the Bank in FY2000. This report will be updated as events warrant.
On November 15-16, 2000, the Eighth Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders' Meeting (summit) was held in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei. In addition to the APEC summit, President Clinton held bilateral summits with several leaders of APEC countries including China, Russia, Japan, and South Korea. For the United States, APEC raises fundamental questions of special interest to Congress. One is whether consensus can be achieved on the APEC vision of free trade and investment in the Asia Pacific or whether future trade liberalization will be confined primarily to bilateral free-trade agreements or multilateral trade negotiations under the World Trade Organization. Others are whether provision of fast-track negotiating authority to the President should cover negotiations under APEC and whether APEC should be expanded to address political as well as economic issues.