AfDB Invests USD 806 Million in African Transport Sector

22/12/2010
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Tunis, 21 December 2010 - In line with the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group’s 2008-2012 Medium-Term Strategy which has transport as one of its core intervention areas in the Regional Member Countries,  the institution’s Boards of directors approved USD 806.1 million loans and grants to finance a number of national and multinational transport infrastructure and related projects on the continent in the past two months.

The operations concern Morocco, Kenya, Ghana, Congo, Central African Republic, Chad and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Kingdom of Morocco was among the beneficiaries with the approval of €300 million to finance the Tangier-Marrakech Railway Line Project.  

Estimated to cost €438.2 million (UA375.6 million), the project, approved on 20 December 2010, aims at substantially increasing the Tangiers-Marrakech railway line capacity, particularly on the Kenitra-Rabat-Casablanca and Casablanca-Settat-Marrakech sections.

The project, scheduled for implementation from 2011-2016, consists of:

  • Rehabilitation work on the existing tracks as well as the construction of a third 148 km track between Zenata and Kenitra;
  • Upgrading and partial double tracking works on the 40-km track between Settat and Marrakech on the Casablanca-Marrakech axis. When completed, the project will improve Morocco’s rail transport competitiveness especially in the freight transport while meeting traffic demands for goods and passengers.

Kenya will receive a USD 53.4-million (UA 35 million) loan to finance the Timoroa-Eldoret Road Rehabilitation Project.  Approved by the African Development Fund (ADF) Board on 6 December 2010, the project forms part of the Northern Corridor International Truck Road that serves as a major transit route between Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Eastern DRC and Southern Sudan. It involves rehabilitating 73 kms of the road. The project, to be implemented over a four-year period, will help improve the transport infrastructure system thereby promoting intra-regional trade, economic growth and overall welfare in the countries concerned.   

The Bank will invest USD 12.2 million (UA 8 million) on a study regarding the OUESSO –Bangui-Ndjamena  and Inland Navigation on the Congo, Oubangui and Sangha Rivers, a multinational project involving Congo, Central African Republic, Chad and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The ADF Board approved the grant on 1 December 2010. The study is expected to boost regional integration through the construction of inter-state transport links between the four Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) countries. The study will specifically determine the technical, environmental and economic feasibility of developing the missing links of the Ouesso-Bangui-N’Djamina road corridor as well as the waterways on the Congo, Oubangui and Sangha Rivers. The long-term target objectives of the study include ensuring a 50% increase in the volume of trade between the four countries while at the same time reducing transport costs and transit time on the routes by 50% by 2020.

Ghana will receive a USD 167.4-million (109.72 million ADF grant will finance the Fufulso-Sawla Road Project.  The grant will Finance the construction of 147. 5 km of road between Fufulso and Sawla aimed at providing an integrated viable and sustainable transport infrastructure to enhance accessibility of the Central and West Gonja districts. Other beneficiary districts in Northern Ghana include the Sawla–Tuna-Kalba districts along the Fufulso-Sawla road. The Fufulso-Sawla road has a high priority ranking in Ghana’s trunk road network.

Efficient and safe transport infrastructure and services are essential to Africa’s economic and social development. The AfDB’s involvement in the sector dates back to 1966 and by the end of 2009, the Group’s cumulative commitment the transport sector stood at USD15 billion or about 17.6% of its cumulative commitments. In 2009, the Bank Group committed about UA 3.0 billion (USD 4.7 billion) to the sector.   

1 UA = 1. 52578 US$ in  December 2010
1 UA = EUR 1.16665 in December 2010