Monday, December 23, 2019 8:20 am
The African Development Bank (AfDB) in a statement on Sunday assured that it will deliver the Lagos-Abidjan Highway.
According to the statement released by the Bank’s Communication and External Relations Department, AfDB’s President, Mr Akinwumi Adesina gave this assurance at the ECOWAS Summit held in Abuja on Saturday.
Adesina revealed that the bank has already provided 11.1 million dollars to the ECOWAS Commission to develop the Master Plan for the Lagos-Abidjan highway corridor and will be providing an additional 13.5 million dollars for the feasibility studies to be completed in 2020.
He added that the construction of the road is expected to start in 2022.
“The Lagos-Abidjan Highway will become a reality. It has to. The President of the ECOWAS Commission, my dear brother Jean Claude is from Côte d’Ivoire and I, President of the African Development Bank, I am from Nigeria.
“You can be sure President Muhammadu Buhari will not let him sleep from this end in Abuja and President Ouattara will not let me sleep at the other end in Abidjan.
“Your Excellencies, to secure our sleep we will deliver on this project. That’s why the African Development Bank has provided 11.1 million dollars to the ECOWAS Commission to develop the Master Plan for the Lagos-Abidjan highway corridor.
“And we will be providing an additional 13.5 million dollars for the feasibility studies to be completed in 2020. We expect that construction will start in 2022,” Adesina was quoted as saying in the statement.
The AfDB President also revealed that the bank’s portfolio investments in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) region is 20 billion dollars.
Adesina explained that the bank’s major focus was on energy and transport infrastructure, private sector, regional financial market integration, water and sanitation.
He said AfDB had been very responsive during critical times that matter most as the bank was always there at the right time, with the right product, for the right needs of countries.
Adesina said one of the bank’s interventions was the case in Nigeria where the bank helped to provide 600 million dollars of budget support that helped the country out of recession.
The president said the bank also provided 500 million dollars to establish the Development Bank of Nigeria.
Similarly, Adesina disclosed that AfDB had recently provided 280 million dollars to support social investments in Côte d’Ivoire and also gave 230 million dollars for support toward stabilising livelihoods in North East Nigeria.
He noted that regional connectivity was critical to boost trade and investments and it was at the core of work of the AfDB to ensure regional integration.
“Take the case of airports, the bank supported with 525 million Euros for the construction of the Blaise Diagne International Airport in Senegal.
“We supported with 120 million dollars in construction of the new Terminal 3 for Kotoka international airport in Ghana.
“The bank also helped with 30 million dollars to construct the Mandela Praia airport in Cape Verde.
“The Bank financed Air Côte d’Ivoire with 130 million dollars for the acquisition of a new aircraft fleet that has helped boost their capacity.
“We have invested as well in the development of ports, including 60 million Euros for the Lomé Container Terminal port.
“The bank fully financed with 96 million dollars for the new landmark SeneGambia Bridge that now links The Gambia and Senegal and the bank also financed Regional Express Train of Senegal with 183 million Euros.”
Adesina said during the bank’s second Africa Investment Forum held in November, AfDB and its partners mobilised investments of 2.6 billion dollars for the development of the Accra Sky Train and also 251 million dollars toward the Lagos Cable Car Transit System projects.
He further disclosed that the bank had also spent 1.5 billion dollars for the development of major transport corridors to improve inter connectivity in the ECOWAS region.
According to him, the projects included the construction and rehabilitation of 4,000 kilometers of main corridor roads.